Environment

Tidal stream prototype clocks up 3 GWh of electricity in first year

Tidal stream prototype clocks ...
The SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype has notched up 12 months of continuous operation at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland
The SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype has notched up 12 months of continuous operation at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland
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The SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype has notched up 12 months of continuous operation at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland
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The SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype has notched up 12 months of continuous operation at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland
Diagram showing the deployed SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype
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Diagram showing the deployed SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype

Scotrenewables Tidal Power has announced that its 2 MW floating tidal stream turbine prototype has managed to generate more than 3 GWh of renewable electricity during its first year of continuous operation, which is reported to be more than the entire wave and tidal energy sector has notched up in the 12 years before the launch of the SR2000 in 2016.

"The SR2000's phenomenal performance has set a new benchmark for the tidal industry," said Scotrenewables CEO Andrew Scott. "Despite being an R&D project, and it being our first full scale turbine, its first year of testing has delivered a performance level approaching that of widely deployed mature renewable technologies."

The prototype is 64 m (210 ft) long with a maximum diameter of 3.8 m (12.5 ft), can be installed in waters more than 25 m (82 ft) deep thanks to its flexible mooring system and makes use of proven components from other industries. Below the surface, the 16 m (52.5 ft) rotor harvests tidal energy with variable speed power regulation and fixed pitch blades. Dubbed the world's most powerful operating tidal stream turbine, it has managed to supply over 25 percent of the electricity needs of the Orkney Islands, off the coast of northern Scotland, during its first 12 months of continuous operation.

Diagram showing the deployed SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype
Diagram showing the deployed SR2000 tidal stream turbine prototype

Bolstered by this success, and the equally impressive performance of four tidal turbines deployed in the Pentland Firth, the company – with help from the EU's Horizon 2020 scheme – is now planning to build a 2 MW commercial tidal turbine later this year, which will also be deployed in Orkney. A report by the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult in May reckoned that the tidal stream industry could "generate a net cumulative benefit to the UK of £1,400 m, including considerable exports, and support 4,000 jobs by 2030."

"The SR2000 has completed the job of demonstrating that we have a breakthrough technology and we will now be shifting all our focus and resources towards building on that success with a product which we are confident can enable a new industry created around a predictable renewable energy source," added Scott.

You can learn more about the SR2000 in the video below, which was released when the prototype had managed 2 GWh back in April, 2018.

Source: Scotrenewables

SR2000 Tidal Turbine 2018 2GWh

4 comments
BeinThayer
A unit more than 200 ft long stationed in one of the best possible locations for tidal power averaged a little less than 340 Kilowatts over the first year of continuous operation. Wholesale electricity rates in the US are typically below 5¢ per kwh. That is $17 per hour it could earn for that production...and that is at one of the world's best locations for tidal power. I would be surprised if maintenance and upkeep costs over something like a ten year period for a 200+ ft vessel with a large attached turbine subjected to the expected ocean conditions would come in under $17 per hour.... Then consider how much it is to build it initially and what a reasonable expected life might be. . Kudos for the significant accomplishment. It does seem that electricity produced would need to increase significantly to be commercially viable without significant subsidies.
ChairmanLMAO
It'll save money for fishermen though by chopping up the tuna before catching them in their nets.
BrianK56
Great design, congrats.
RogerHoleman
I live on the US Pacific coast in Washington State. My most recent electric bill shows a cost of 6.7 cents per kilowatt-hour. This tidal power device, remarkable as it may be from the standpoint of its design and functionality, generated about $201,000 worth of electricity based on my local rates. There will need to be at least a 100-fold improvement in cost performance before this becomes viable in the real world. Ratepayers somewhere paid millions to learn that this is totally unfeasible. Is there some argument that this was a worthwhile venture, other than to show yet another way not to generate power?