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Hammerfest Strom Tidal Turbine Installed In Orkney – ScottishPower Renewables’ Plan For World’s First Tidal Array In Islay A Step Closer

28/12/2011

The blades and nacelle of the HS1000 tidal turbine in transportation to the European Marine Energy Centre in OrkneyA 100ft underwater turbine that is destined to be part of the world’s first tidal power array has been successfully deployed in the sea around Orkney this week, signalling a major step forward for the global marine renewable energy industry.

The 1 megawatt (MW) Hammerfest Strom HS1000 device, which can power the annual electricity needs of 500 homes, is the same machine that will be used by ScottishPower Renewables (SPR) as part of the world’s first tidal turbine array in the Sound of Islay.  The company’s plans to develop a 10MW tidal array in Islay received planning consent from the Scottish Government in March this year.

The HS1000 tidal turbine has been developed by Hammerfest Strøm, a company partly-owned by Iberdrola (SPR’s parent company), Andritz Hydro and Statoil New Energy. Seen as one of the world’s most advanced tidal turbine designs, a prototype device has been generating electricity in Norway for over 6 years.

Following its successful installation at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, the HS1000 device will now enter a test period to confirm its performance and reliability, in preparation for larger scale production and deployment. It is expected that the machine will be fully operational in early 2012. The tests will also help to finalise the timetable for the Islay project, with machines being installed as early as feasible during the period 2013 to 2015.

Keith Anderson, Chief Executive of ScottishPower Renewables, said: “We are delighted that the HS1000 turbine has been successfully installed in Orkney, and Hammerfest engineers deserve huge credit for carrying out this difficult operation in very testing weather conditions. We look forward to monitoring its progress when fully operational next year.

“This is a major milestone in the development of tidal power technology in Scotland, and for the tidal power industry across the world. We anticipate using this turbine as part of our project in Islay, which will be the first of its kind in the world, and remains the only consented tidal array project in Scotland. Beyond this, we have ambitions to use this turbine as part of even larger scale projects in the Pentland Firth, which we are currently investigating.

“The substructure for this device was constructed in the Arnish Yard, near Stornoway in Lewis, and we aim to work very closely with The Scottish Government to support their ambitions of delivering both economic and environmental benefits for Scotland from the marine renewables industry.”

A computerised image of an array of HS1000 turbines, similar to the planned project in IslayThe Managing Director of Hammerfest Strom, Stein Atle Andersen, said; “The device was installed in one of Europe’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.”

Scotland is widely regarded as having the best tidal power resources anywhere in the world and the progression to demonstration projects is seen as a vital step towards fully realising this potential.  The Islay project will play a key role in proving a range of factors necessary for the large scale deployment of the technology. This will include developing a better understanding of the technical aspects involved in deploying and maintaining machines and bringing forward systems to monitor and analyse their performance.

  • ScottishPower Renewables is part of Iberdrola, the largest wind power company in the world. Its global offshore wind power headquarters are based in Glasgow and it currently has a pipeline of around 10,000MW in offshore wind projects across Europe, primarily in the UK. ScottishPower Renewables is the first developer in the UK to achieve one gigawatt (GW) of electricity production capacity from wind power. Iberdrola has an installed capacity of more than 12,000 MW at the end of 2010, and a pipeline of over 60,000 MW.

  • Read more about Hammerfest Strom Tidal Turbine Technology

Media Information: Simon McMillan 07753 622 257, Paul Ferguson 07702 665 924