The plans for the 10MW Tidal Energy Project in the Sound of Islay took a significant step forward in December with the successful deployment of the Hammerfest StrÃ¸m HS1000 tidal turbine at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney.
The 1 megawatt (MW) Hammerfest StrÃ¸m HS1000 device, which can power the annual electricity needs of approximately 500 homes, is the same design as will be used by ScottishPower Renewables (SPR) as part of the worldâ€™s first tidal turbine array in the Sound of Islay. The device measures over 20 metres from the seabed to the hub with the blades reaching a further 10 metres. With the substructure alone weighing several hundred tonnes, a specialist heavy lift vessel that is twice as long as the Finlaggan ferry was used to install the device.
The HS1000 tidal turbine has been developed by Hammerfest StrÃ¸m, a company partly-owned by Iberdrola (SPRâ€™s parent company), Andritz Hydro and Statoil New Energy. Seen as one of the worldâ€™s most advanced tidal turbine designs, a prototype device has been generating electricity in Norway for over six years. The device substructure was constructed in Scotland by BiFab at Arnish on Lewis and it is hoped that this is the start of a much larger marine renewables industry in Scotland. Continue reading....
Andy Macdonald, the Islay Energy Trustâ€™s Tidal Project Officer said â€œWe are delighted with the news. The installation at EMEC in Orkney is a very significant step forward and along with the achievement of consent from the Scottish Government in March marks a very successful year for the Sound of Islay project.â€
Keith Anderson, Chief Executive of ScottishPower Renewables, said: â€œWe are delighted that the HS1000 turbine has been successfully installed, and Hammerfest engineers deserve huge credit for carrying out this difficult operation in very testing weather conditions. We anticipate using this turbine as part of our project in the Sound of Islay, which will be the first of its kind in the world, and remains the only consented tidal array project in Scotland.â€
One of the not insignificantly sized turbines proposed for installation in the Sound of Islay
The Managing Director of Hammerfest StrÃ¸m, Stein Atle Andersen, said; â€œThe device was installed in one of Europeâ€™s most challenging waters, during the roughest time of the year, which shows the extreme conditions the technology and the team is capable of handling.â€
Following its successful installation, the HS1000 device will now enter a test period to confirm its performance and reliability. The tests will also help to finalise the timetable for the Sound of Islay project, which will be installed as early as feasible during the period 2013 to 2015.
This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.