Belgium company raises US$2.4 million for WEC device testing in Scotland

Flemish wave energy developer, Laminaria, announced it has raised €2 million (US$2.4 million) in investment to further develop its wave energy technology and initiate a full-scale demonstration project at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, Scotland.

Laminaria will be the first Belgian company to test at EMEC’s sites and its wave energy conversion (WEC) technology includes a surge operated attenuator that has a custom, built-in storm protection system to enhance its survivability, according to the company.

The company made the announcement yesterday saying it has raised funds from new investors, QBIC II and PMV, and existing investor CEIP.

In February, HydroWorld.com reported Laminaria launched the OCEANERA-NET funded LAMWEC project which includes EMEC, Innosea, Ghent University and TTI Testing to help Laminaria develop and test a 200-kW WEC device.

A key focus of the project will be on the WEC’s survivability in extreme storm conditions, with emphasis on the design and build of Laminaria’s power take-off and storm protection system, new anchor design suitable for a range of seabed configurations, and the development of a mooring and pulley system that will support the aforementioned components.

According to Laminaria, a 1-in-5 scale energy producing version of its wave device was successfully tested in the North Sea in 2015.

“After delivering proof of concept with the North Sea test campaign in 2015, demonstrating a grid connected device in the turbulent Scottish waters is the next very exciting step for Laminaria,” said Steven Nauwelaerts, Laminaria chief executive officer. “The testing and development campaigns to date have given confidence to QBIC II, PMV and CEIP to invest in Laminaria’s future and support the next stage of the technologies progress.”

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Gregory B. Poindexter formerly was an associate editor for HydroWorld.com.

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