Orbital signs up for 2nd berth at EMEC to create floating tidal farm

Orbital Marine O2 tidal unit. Source: Orbital Marine Power Ltd

March 31 (Renewables Now) - Scottish tidal energy company Orbital Marine Power Ltd has secured a second berth at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC), which makes it possible for the company to deliver its first floating tidal turbine farm.

Orbital anticipates deploying a 2-MW O2 turbine platform at the first berth in Orkney, Scotland, this year. Grid connection is expected by the end of 2020, with full operation scheduled for early 2021. The Orbital O2, which will consist of a 72-metre long floating superstructure with two 1-MW turbines at each end, is currently being manufactured.

The plan is to have a second 2-MW turbine platform installed in 2022 to form a 4-MW floating tidal power farm at EMEC’s Fall of Warness test site. The output of the facility will be fed into the national grid via EMEC’s subsea cable and onshore substation.

For the initial project, Orbital raised GBP 7 million (USD 8.6m/EUR 7.9m) in crowdfunding and also got GBP 3.4 million from the Scottish government through the Saltire Tidal Energy Challenge Fund.

(GBP 1.0 = USD 1.235/EUR 1.128)

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