British renewable energy operator npower renewables and wave power developer Wavegen have reached agreement aimed at developing a 3-MW wave power plant on Lewis Island in the Hebrides Islands of Scotland.
When feasibility work is concluded successfully, the project is to apply for funds from the United Kingdom’s Department of Trade and Industry’s Marine Renewable Development Fund. The financing mechanism provides capital and revenue support for initial arrays of wave energy plants.
The Lewis plant would use technology based on Wavegen’s 500-kW Limpet (Land Installed Marine Powered Energy Transformer) plant on the island of Islay. Operating since 2000, Limpet uses oscillating water column technology and is the only grid-connected OWC plant operating under commercial conditions.
Voith Siemens Hydro Power Generation, owner of Wavegen, said if the project advances, it will be installed in a new breakwater. The shared civil engineering costs would result in a considerable cost savings for the wave power plant, while creating a new harbor on the island. The plant would supply power to about 1,500 homes.