Marine energy companies Minesto and Atlantis Resources Ltd (Atlantis) have been awarded $955,000 (€750,000) from the Eurostars Programme, funded by the European Union. The funding is awarded to a project that aims to reduce the cost of tidal energy and is a collaboration between two different marine energy developers.
The funds will be used to reduce the cost of tidal power plants by creating cost effective high reliability tidal turbine blades and wings of composite materials. The total project value is €1.5 million off which €750,000 is covered by the funds from the Eurostars Programme.
“This is a truly unique collaboration between tidal energy developers,” said Anders Jansson CEO of Minesto. “Minesto and Atlantis introduce a wealth of experience from the development of marine energy plants and our complimentary positions in the tidal energy market will facilitate extensive knowledge exchange that would not be viable via other technology developer collaborations. The funding also proves that Eurostars has identified marine energy as a strong future supplier of clean energy.”
Eurostars is a programme that supports research-based small and medium enterprises, which develop innovative products, processes and services, to gain competitive advantage. Eurostars does this by providing funding for transnational innovation projects, the products of which are then rapidly commercialized. The Eurostars programme is publicly financed by the European Union with a total budget of 1.14 billion euros.
Atlantis CEO, Tim Cornelius, says: “Constant innovation and collaboration in the development of tidal turbines will be critical to the commercialisation of the industry globally. This funding and consequent partnership will enable us to design and build even better turbines, capable of operating at even greater efficiency in the most hostile of environments.”
“A better understanding of the material of the wing, its behaviour, and likely failure modes can lead to better design and monitoring and ultimately higher reliability and fewer expensive failures of key components,” said Anders Jansson. “The project will conduct research allowing the design of the wing to be optimised and so improve the power plant’s performance.”
In the project, key components of Minesto’s and Atlantis’ tidal energy converters will be jointly developed. Minesto has a unique, patented and internationally awarded technology, Deep Green, with the ability to produce cost effective electricity from both low flow tidal and ocean currents. In this project, Minesto will further develop the wing for their innovative Deep Green technology to harness tidal flows of 1.2-2.5m/s.
This Eurostars project supports their flagship turbine, the AR1500, a 1.5MW horizontal axis machine. The project will involve Atlantis completing material testing to understand the nature of the complex composite materials used in blade manufacture; use Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and finite element analysis for detailed blade design; explore the optimization of methodologies and techniques for production; and manufacture, test and certify one turbine blade.