Turbines installed on Bluemull Sound, just off the coast of Shetland, are being heralded as marking a “new era” in tidal energy
Nova Innovation, the company running the project, has now successfully deployed a second turbine after the first was installed earlier in the year.
This marks a world first, as Nova believes this to be the only fully operational, commercial, grid-connected offshore tidal array.
Currently, the array is made up of two 100kW turbines. Long term the array will see 5 Nova M-100 turbines submerged in Bluemull Sound. This should allow the array to generate 0.5MW for the Shetland grid.
3D render of Nova Innovations 100kW turbine
Tidal energy offers a few benefits over other forms of renewable power. It is far more predictable and can generate an output across all tidal conditions. The turbines themselves are designed for diver-less installation and maintenance.
The array has been created with an 80% Scottish supply chain underlining the companies commitment to the local economy.
Turbine location in Bluemull Sound
While tidal energy represents a fairly small percentage of the UKs energy output, the UK Carbon Trust estimates the global market could be worth over £126 billion by 2050.