The world’s most powerful tidal turbine, developed and manufactured by Scottish engineering company Scotrenewables Tidal Power Limited, has reached full rated power at the European Marine Energy Centre, Orkney.
After undergoing grid connected commissioning works prior to Christmas last year, the ‘SR2000’ was re-connected to its subsea cable in a low cost connection operation that took under an hour. All offshore operations have been delivered with small crew transfer vessels or locally based workboats.
Following energisation, the 500 tonne floating tidal turbine commenced generation and power export to the local Orkney grid. Since then the turbine has been undergoing a phased testing programme leading to full, 2MW rated export capacity being achieved on 12th April.
Andrew Scott, CEO, said: “We are tremendously excited to have the SR2000 demonstrating the performance and cost advantages of our floating tidal technology, in line with forecasts, whilst delivering new benchmarks within the tidal sector. This performance resets the bar for the costs of delivering tidal power. Achieving this industry milestone is a goal the team at Scotrenewables have worked tirelessly towards for a long time - the credit lies with them for these fantastic achievements.”
The company is focused on building generation up on the SR2000 over the immediate future and demonstrating its power performance in parallel with its unique low operational costs.
This deployment is already feeding into design optimisations being made under the company’s commercialisation project, FloTEC, which will see an even lower cost SR2000 model rolled out as a commercial offering in 2018.
ABOUT SCOTRENEWABLES TIDAL POWER:
Scotrenewables Tidal Power Limited is an innovative Scottish engineering company focused on the development of a tidal energy turbine technology with the potential to produce a step-change reduction in the cost of energy from tidal currents. The company’s novel floating technology offers a low cost solution for simplified and safe manufacture, installation, access and maintenance along with the ability to use low cost, small workboats for all offshore operations. The company currently employs 26 staff with offices in Orkney and Edinburgh.
The technology has been under continuous engineering development, including rigorous testing of scaled systems in both tank conditions and open ocean environments, since the company was founded in Orkney in 2002. In 2012 the company achieved a world’s first when it exported power to the UK grid from its 250kW floating scale model.
The current SR2000, the world’s largest tidal turbine, was launched from the Harland & Wolff shipyard, Belfast, in May 2016 before being towed to Orkney.
The SR2000 project has been supported by Scottish Enterprise’s WATERS II scheme along with investments from Scotrenewables’ shareholders, which include ABB, DP Energy, Fred Olsen, Total, Scotmarine Limited, Barry Johnston and Scottish Government via the Renewable Energy Investment Fund (REIF).
Scotrenewables has recently been selected by the European Commission to lead on the engineering and delivery of an enhanced model of the SR2000 machine. Leveraging £7m Horizon 2020 funding Scotrenewables will lead an industrial consortium to optimise the SR2000 under the “FloTEC” project which is scheduled to run until 2019.
The company is currently discussing turbine supply opportunities in the UK, France, Canada and the Far East.