World’s largest wave farm off Orkney

wave farm

Scottish ministers have announced funding for what has been described as the world’s biggest wave energy farm.

Ocean Power Delivery Ltd has developed a novel offshore wave energy converter called Pelamis. Building on technology developed for the offshore industry, the Pelamis has a similar output to a modern wind turbine. The first fullscale pre-production prototype has been built and tested at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney.

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister Nicol Stephen announced a £13m funding package that will also allow a number of other marine energy devices to be tested. The biggest single handout of more than £4m will go to a Scottish Power subsidiary, CRE Energy, which will build the wave farm. Scottish Power is planning a venture which it believes could create enough power for 2,000 homes.

Ocean Power Delivery Ltd anticipate that future `wave farm’ projects would consist of an arrangement of interlinked multi-machines connected to shore by a single subsea cable. A typical 30MW installation would occupy a square kilometre of ocean and provide sufficient electricity for 20,000 homes. Twenty of these farms could power a city such as Edinburgh.


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2 Responses to World’s largest wave farm off Orkney

  1. Pete Smith says:

    This looks like very interesting technology. These things are BIG, though, the 40-unit ‘wavefarm’ is particularly intimidating. If a ship without power drifted into that in a storm, I don’t know which would come off worse.
    Last September OPD and E.ON agreed to develop a 7-unit 5MW project connected to the ‘Wave Hub’ being built off Hayle in Cornwall.
    The 3-unit pilot project off Portugal is apparently working well, delivering 2.25MW, and they plan another 28 units this year.
    I can’t think of a downside to this technology, but I’m sure someone will come up with something.

  2. matt says:

    > ( from ) ….
    ‘Wave also has the potential to become one of the lowest cost forms of electricity generation, with opening costs now around half those of wind energy and a quarter those of solar PV. …. The worldwide market for wave power is estimated at £500bn.’

    Does sound promising this technology. Maybe they could place these machines amongst off-shore wind farms. Certainly a technology to watch.

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