The world’s most powerful’ tidal turbine, the “O2” turbine, is expected to come into operation in the latter half of 2020, at the European Marine Energy Centre in Scotland. There, it will undergo a two-year test period before being brought to market.
The commercial production unit is being developed with support from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme scheme.
The 72 metre long O2, capable of generating more than 2MW from tidal stream resources, will be installed at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney. Its turbine rotors can be turned 360° to allow power to be extracted from both tidal directions.
The device will be manufactured by Scottish company Texo Group at their new quayside facilities in Dundee. Key components will delivered by Gray Fabrication in Cupar using material from Liberty Steel in Motherwell.
Orbital Marine Power made headlines last year after its SR2000 turbine, which was launched in 2016, was found to have generated more power in its first year of operation than the entire wave and tidal energy sectors in Scotland did from 2004-15.
“This is a flagship engineering project for the emerging tidal sector and we are delighted to be working with TEXO Group to showcase the very capable supply chain we are fortunate to have around us in Scotland and the wider UK,” Orbital Marine Power’s chief executive Andrew Scott said.
Scotrenewables’ 2MW SR2000 unit clocked up more than 3GWh of renewable electricity in its first year of testing at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, the company said.
“The results that we achieved with the SR2000 over the past two years are a convincing validation of our low-cost approach to generating clean, predictable power from tidal stream energy.”
This unit will also go to Orkney for testing before the company targets sales of the turbine.
Scotland has an estimated one third of the UK’s tidal stream resources and two thirds of the UK’s wave resources. Marine energy resources can provide renewable energy generation as part of the response to the global climate emergency.