EU provides EUR 11m to help developers test ocean energy technologies
Wave. Author: Barbara Walsh. License: Creative Commons. Attribution 2.0 Generic
An EUR-11-million (USD 12.2m) EU-funded project has been announced today to help ocean energy technology developers demonstrate tidal, wave and offshore wind energy devices at Europe's leading ocean energy test facilities.
The project is called FORESEA (Funding Ocean Renewable Energy through Strategic European Action) and is led by the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC). In addition to EMEC in Orkney Islands, UK, it also involves SmartBay in Galway, Ireland, SEM-REV in Nantes, France and Tidal Testing Centre in Den Oever, Netherlands.
The project will offer funding and business development support packages to TRL 5+ technology developers looking to test in real-sea and grid-connected conditions, and leverage the additional investment needed to bring their product to market.
The first call for bids for support packages is expected to be announced later in July.
"The cost of pre-commercial testing and demonstration for ocean energy is high and investors are generally reluctant to invest until the technology has been proven in the sea at scale," said Oliver Wragg, commercial director at EMEC. "FORESEA will provide financial assistance to Europe’s most promising ocean energy innovators and help them ‘get metal wet’, get their technologies tested in real-sea conditions and get private investment flowing into the sector," he added.
The project is funded by the Interreg NWE programme, which is part of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The test centres will be supported by European industry group Ocean Energy Europe.