The Scottish Government has launched a £10 million fund to support commercial deployment of tidal energy generation in Scottish waters through driving innovation and reduction in the cost of electricity generated. Responding to the announcement, Andrew Scott, CEO of Orbital Marine said:
“The tidal industry is at an exciting point; nowhere else in the world are thousands of homes being powered from predictable, renewable tidal stream energy other than Scotland. This achievement has been the result of a lot of hard work and commitment over the years from both Scottish Government and the industry.
As a Scottish technology developer who has contributed to this progress we applaud the Scottish Government for recognising the unique challenges that we now must overcome to commercialise technologies and grow an industry that can deliver further success domestically and globally.”
Scottish Government Press Release
Orbital Marine Power Ltd is an innovative Scottish engineering company focused on the development of a tidal energy turbine technology capable of producing a dramatic reduction in the cost of energy from tidal currents. The Orbital 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 2002. The company currently employs 32 staff with offices in Orkney and Edinburgh.
Orbital was the first company in the world to successfully grid connect a floating tidal turbine in 2011. In 2016 the company launched the SR2000, the world’s most powerful tidal stream turbine. The SR2000 produced in excess of 3GWh of electricity over its initial 12-month continuous test programme. At the time this represented more power from a single turbine than had been generated cumulatively by the wave and tidal sector in Scotland over the 12 years prior to the launch of the SR2000.
In October 2018 Orbital opened a £7m crowd funding debenture on the London-based Abundance Investment platform to support the build of the O2 turbine with the target being met inside 10 weeks. The Orbital O2 will comprise of a 72m long floating superstructure, supporting two 1 MW turbines at either side for a nameplate power output of 2MW, at a tidal current speed of 2.5 m/s. With rotor diameters of 20m, it will have a 600sq metre rotor area, the largest ever on a single tidal generating platform to date.
The O2 project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the FloTEC project (grant agreement No. 691916) and the European Regional Development Fund through the Interreg North West Europe Programme under the ITEG project.
This project has also received support under the framework of the OCEANERA-NET COFUND project, with funding provided by national / regional sources and co-funding by the European Union’s Horizon2020 research and innovation programme.