Tidal energy platform at Connel proving a success

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A temporary tidal energy system has been installed at Connel and is now operational.

The PLAT-I platform, which consists of four turbines, is undergoing tests after being installed by Sustainable Marine Energy (SME) towards the end of last month.

The power take-off system comprises four SCHOTTEL Instream Turbines (SIT) and an accessible power conversion system hosted in an on-board container.

Within 48 hours of being installed, the system generated power and the platform has since ‘demonstrated excellent stability throughout a range of tide and weather conditions’.

After testing concludes at Connel, PLAT-I will be disassembled and transported to Asia, where it will be redeployed.

Jason Hayman, managing director of SME, said: ‘We have taken PLAT-I from drawing board to first power generation within a period of 15 months, a real achievement.

‘The support of the Scottish Government as well as our supply chain partners and investors has also been instrumental to this success. Now we are eagerly looking forward completing testing at Connel and to the next phase in the project which will see the system installed in Asia.

‘It is a fantastic feeling to be able to offer the first affordable and viable tidal energy system for small- to medium-size projects of less than 10MW for remote coastal and island communities currently reliant on diesel generation.’

Niels A Lange, managing director SCHOTTEL HYDRO GmbH, added: ‘Over the past few years SCHOTTEL has invested a great deal into the development of the SIT turbine and power conversion systems.

‘We at SCHOTTEL Hydro are very pleased to see the first results of our collaboration with SME on the PLAT-I project.

‘This provides an economically and practically viable means of delivering SITs globally for tidal and river markets. This is the fully integrated system the tidal energy market needs.’