Home » EU funding secured for ambitious Orkney tidal energy farm

EU funding secured for ambitious Orkney tidal energy farm

by Mark Cantrell
A consortium led by Nova Innovation, with UKRI support, has secured €20m from the EU Horizon Europe fund to deliver a 16-turbine tidal farm project.

A project that aims to deploy the world’s largest tidal energy farm in Scottish waters has secured EU funding to help deliver the ambition.

A consortium led by Nova Innovation, with UKRI support, has secured €20m from the EU Horizon Europe fund to deliver a 16-turbine tidal farm project.

The 4MW array will be installed at the EMEC Fall of Warness tidal site in Orkney, home to the second strongest tidal currents across the globe.

SEASTAR – Sustainable European Advanced Subsea Tidal Array – is said to mark a significant advancement in tidal energy. It will showcase industrial scale manufacturing, operation, and maintenance techniques for the first time.

The project will do this throughout the entire lifecycle of the tidal farm; from design, production, shipping, deployment, and operation to decommissioning.

Simon Forrest, chief executive of Nova Innovation, said: “This is a huge win for Nova and a huge vote of confidence for the tidal energy sector.

“To be awarded this flagship European tidal energy project with turbines made and deployed here in Scotland, using a pan-European supply chain, is testament to our track record of success.

“The SEASTAR project will see more turbines installed than all other current deployments worldwide combined. This will enable Nova to start mass manufacturing, deploy at scale, and continue to drive down the cost of tidal energy.”

The 16-turbine tidal farm will also provides unique opportunities to address critical environmental evidence gaps, and develop cost-effective, reliable monitoring solutions to accelerate permitting – thus removing barriers for future large tidal farms.

According to Nova, this project promises to reinforce the collaborative partnership between Scotland and Europe, create high-quality green jobs, and enhance Europe’s position as a global frontrunner in the marine energy supply chain.

The project builds on the success of Nova’s six-turbine Shetland Tidal Array – the world’s first offshore tidal array. This was delivered under the H2020 EnFAIT project by a team including SEASTAR partners SKF and Wood.

For SEASTAR, they are joined by EMEC, Primo Marine, Wave Venture, Nature Positive, Renewable Risk Advisors, Leask Marine and DLA Piper, which specialise respectively in site management, subsea cable design, offshore analysis, sustainability, insurance, offshore operations and legal services.

Rémi Gruet, chief executive of professional network Ocean Energy Europe, said: “Tidal stream is ready for the next phase, and that involves putting more machines in the water. With this award, the European Commission is sending a strong signal that Europe wants to remain a leader in tidal technologies, especially as those technologies have been developed here.”


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