Benefits of our technology
Our tidal turbine offers a number of advantages for cost-effective electricity generation:
- Periodic, predictable tidal flow allowing accurate power generation forecast.
- A fully submerged device with no visual or shipping impact.
- An ability to exploit tidal resource from 35m to 80m depth so this allows our technology to make the most of many sites around the world.
- The deployment and retrieval process only requires small boats (approximately 20m work boat) as the machine is buoyant and can be towed to and from the tripod location. Deployment and retrieval once on location can be completed within a single slack water period (approximately 30 minutes) so a machine can be retrieved and a new one installed within a single tidal cycle. The deployment and retrieval process does not require prohibitively expensive jack-up barges, dynamic positioning vessels or other large, expensive boats.
- A nacelle that rotates every time the tide changes direction. This allows the machine to manage flood and ebb tide directions that are not perfectly bi-directional in order to maximise the available power, whilst minimising forces on the structure associated with offset tidal flow. This also means that the initial placement of the foundation does not have to be perfectly aligned with the tidal flow. At EMEC, we have seen up to 10 degree offset between flood and ebb tides.
- The pitching of the turbine blades can be easily altered to control the load and make best use of the tidal conditions at any one time.
- A relatively lightweight steel tripod foundation with patented fast drilling installation technique. This is much lighter than pile mounted or gravity foundations and therefore uses much less material (steel) per machine.
- All routine maintenance work is carried out on shore, where servicing, resources and spare parts are readily available. Whilst one machine is being serviced, a second machine will already be installed to continue power generation. This eliminates hazardous marine operations attempting to maintain a machine at sea.
- No divers are required to work in the highly challenging and hazardous marine environment.