OPENHYDRO has become the first tidal energy company to complete the connection of a tidal turbine to the UK national grid and commence electricity generation. Its 250kW Open-Centre Turbine, which is installed at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) off Orkney, started generating to the grid on May 26.
The company has been testing its Open-Centre Turbine over the past 18 months at EMEC. During the grid test, the device operated as expected, according to the Irish company.
Brendan Gilmore, chairman, OpenHydro, said in a statement: “This is a hugely significant development not only for OpenHydro, but for the future of the tidal eEnergy industry and security of energy supply. It is also a further major step in our programme to deploy an array of 1MW turbines in Alderney, the Channel Islands, in 2009.”
The company recently started the manufacture of its next-generation 1MW Open-Centre Turbine, which will be deployed in the Bay of Fundy and Alderney. The turbines are being built at the company’s design and production facility in Greenore, County Louth, Ireland. OpenHydro has raised more than 50million euros in funding since 2005 for the commercial development of its turbines. The company employs 26 people.