Third tidal turbine deployed in Bluemull Sound

by Tom Morton -

Paul Wheelhouse MSP, Scottish Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, announced at the end of February that Scottish tidal energy leader Nova Innovation has successfully deployed a third turbine at the Shetland Tidal Array in Bluemull Sound, between the north isles of Yell and Unst.

The announcement was made at the Renewable UK 13th Annual Wave & Tidal Conference & Exhibition at the QEII Conference Centre, London.

The Shetland Tidal Array is the world’s first grid-connected offshore tidal array. Edinburgh-headquartered Nova Innovation installed the first Nova M100 turbine in the Bluemull Sound in March 2016, the second in August 2016, with the third going live in February this year.

The project is a collaborative partnership with Belgian renewable energy leader ELSA, who provided project management expertise and operational input, as well as financial support. The partnership has delivered a world-leading project that showcases the best in pan-European co-operation.

The Shetland Tidal Array has 100 percent EU content and has been delivered with over 80 percent Scottish supply chain input, demonstrating Nova’s commitment to local supply chain and industrial strategy engagement.

The project has been highlighted as best practice in the delivery of an offshore tidal array; from conceptualisation, through to delivery. The deployment was seamless at all stages despite operations taking place in a hostile weather environment. The complete onshore and offshore system was installed in under 6 days, during mid-winter, in a diver-less operation – showcasing Nova’s ‘plug and play’ technology. The latest works have demonstrated massive cost reductions beyond the previous best in the industry, driving the industry towards commercialisation.

Paul Wheelhouse said:

“Tidal energy has great potential to further contribute to Scotland’s energy supply and is already having a positive impact on the Scottish economy, bringing innovation, inward investment and skilled jobs.

“Today’s announcement is another landmark development in Scotland and an excellent example of EU partner collaboration. Nova Innovation’s technology and ELSA’s project management expertise have delivered transformational change in this exciting growth sector.

“We have committed grant and loan funding to Nova Innovation and I am therefore very pleased to see that our investment is delivering tangible results. I very warmly welcome the commitment from Nova Innovation to support the local supply chain by building a project with extremely high levels of Scottish input.”

Simon Forrest, Chief Executive Officer, Nova Innovation said: “I welcome the Minister’s positive comments. The team is immensely proud to have deployed and successfully operated the first offshore tidal array in the world. Not only is this a ground-breaking achievement for Nova and our partners, but it marks Scotland out as a leader in marine energy.”

He added: “We are in discussions with partners in a number of export markets and are very much looking forward to establishing tidal energy as a long-term source of clean, green, predictable renewable energy.”

Since its inception in 2010, Nova Innovation has been at the forefront of tidal energy technology development. This further announcement reaffirms Nova and ELSA’s position as market leaders in the sector.

Posted in: Renewables