ocean energy

First full-scale tidal energy generator in Wales unveiled

The first full-scale tidal energy generator in Welsh waters has been unveiled at Pembroke Port by The First Minister of Wales, the Rt. Hon. Carwyn Jones AM.
First full-scale tidal energy generator in Wales unveiled

The DeltaStream device was developed by Tidal Energy Ltd (TEL) and will be installed in Ramsey Sound, Pembrokeshire following a 12 month testing period. It is the first private marine energy project to be fully developed in Wales and the first grid-connected freestanding tidal turbine in the country. Nine DeltaStream devices will be installed be installed by TEL in cooperation with Welsh renewable energy company Eco2. This will deliver a 10MW commercial array which will generate enough power for around 10,000 homes.

Key design features of the device include a freestanding triangular gravity foundation which provides an important alternative to existing ‘piling’ methods for stability of the device on the seabed. This helps to reduce the high installation and maintenance costs traditionally associated with marine renewable technology. The device also has a patented turbine blade design and incorporates up to 3 turbines on a single structure providing a high average output power.  A state-of-the-art hydraulics system ensures that the turbine can turn freely in order to capture the best tidal flow thereby maximising power generation. Gravitational pull anchors the device in place and this eliminates the need for drilling into the seabed, reducing costs and ensuring low installation and maintenance.

TEL’s 400kW demonstration device weighs 150 tonnes and is based on a frame 16 metres long by 20 metres high. It incorporates a number of design features to minimise potential impacts on the environment and is the first project to receive precautionary ‘deploy and monitor’ environmental consent in a designated Marine Special Area of Conservation.

The EU’s European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) has invested £8 million in the project delivered through the Welsh Government, the Carbon Trust and Carbon Connections UK Ltd with match funding from Eco2 Ltd which is the majority shareholder.

“This is a significant milestone for us as a company and for the industry as a whole” said Martin Murphy, Managing Director of Tidal Energy Ltd. “We have achieved a number of firsts with this project, including those relating to the environmental consents, the grid connection and the installation process - where the turbine and foundation are installed together. The imminent launch of DeltaStream, and the supply chain that now exists as a consequence of its development, marks the birth of the tidal industry in Wales. We remain committed to leading the expansion of this industry and to the creation of green jobs by building on the wealth of expertise present in the UK and the country’s plentiful resources.”

The DeltaStream project is the first step in the delivery of the Welsh Government’s March 2014 Plan for its Low Carbon Transition Strategy in marine renewable generation. First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones added that the DeltaStream is a landmark project for Wales which will also help the country to meet its sustainable energy ambitions and provide significant opportunities for local people and businesses.

For additional information:

Tidal Energy Ltd (TEL)


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