European Commission awards grant for Fortum-led wave energy research

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Finnish utility Fortum has received a US$19.12 million grant from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 program for a five-year wave energy research and development initiative.

The project, called “Clean Energy From Ocean Waves” (CEFOW), is coordinated by Fortum and seeks to further refine the “Penguin” wave energy converter developed by Finland’s Wello in grid-connected ocean conditions.

The $27.6 million project also includes Mojo Maritime Ltd., Wave Hub Ltd., Green Marine (UK) Ltd., Uppsala University, Plymouth University and the University of Exeter, who will conduct the testing at the Wave Hub testing site off the coast of Cornwall.

“By this project we are expecting to increase our capabilities and skills in the field of wave power,” Fortum chief technology officer Heli Antila said. “We believe that the funding from the European Commission and the experienced collaboration partners create excellent conditions for making strides forward in commercializing Wello’s wave power technology.

“On a global scale, this project is at the vanguard of wave power research.” reported in February 2014 that Fortum had signed a lease agreement with Wave Hub for a test berth capable of handling up to 10 MW of cumulative generation.

Since entering the marine and hydrokinetics sector in 2007, the Fortum has participated in the development of several MHK technologies — also including the AW-Energy’s WaveRoller that has been successfully tested off the coast of Portugal.

This past year, the company signed an agreement with AW-Energy and DCNS to continue the WaveRoller testing off the northern coast of France.

Fortum is also working with Seabase AB to complete a 10 MW wave power park off the west coast of Sweden. The project is expected to begin producing energy later this year.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for

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