Hydropower, Offshore, Project Development

Tidal Power Gets Funding Boost

A new company has been formed to allow the further development of pioneering technology to exploit the power of the sea. Northumberland-based Engineering Business (EB) has joined with the New and Renewable Energy Center (NaREC) in Blyth to create Tidal Energy Business (TEB).

Northumberland, England – September 15, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] The technological expertise of EB coupled with a ý1m (US$1.6 million) investment from NaREC in the new company, will allow vital development work on the Stingray ocean energy demonstrator – currently sited on the seabed in 30 meters of water off the Shetland Islands – to continue. Stingray was designed by EB to exploit energy in moving water, driving a generator through hydraulic cylinders and a motor. EB said initial tests have proved positive and on the back of the establishment of the new company, EB and NaREC expect to attract more funding to build a demonstration Stingray power station. The Stingray program started its major development two years ago and is part funded by the DTI under the New and Renewable Energy Programme. The involvement of NaREC as an equity investor is a new way of encouraging emerging technology to be developed within British industry. “This new partnership between EB and NaREC opens a new chapter in the development of Stingray and I hope we can build on this cooperation in many ways, bringing benefits to both organizations,” said Dr. Tony Trapp, Managing Director of EB. “EB has developments in tidal stream, wave and offshore wind power and together with NaREC, we can ensure that North East England is a leader in ocean energy technology development.” The Stingray 150kW demonstrator was first installed in Shetland last year, the first large scale tidal stream generator ever to be installed in an exposed ocean environment. Stingray is currently on the seabed in 30m of water in Yell Sound undergoing intensive development and is yielding rapidly increasing power output and energy capture. TEB will operate from EB headquarters in Riding Mill, Northumberland, and Stingray will continue to be developed using EB’s engineering and management skills. EB’s four executive directors will be joined on the board of TEB by two directors from NaREC.