E.ON unveils Pelamis-built wave energy hydropower device in UK

The UK subsidiary of German utility E.ON AG has unveiled its first wave energy hydropower device in the UK. United Kingdom-based marine hydropower developer Pelamis Wave Power Ltd. developed and constructed the device, which will be tested at the European Marine Energy Centre.

Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond launched the P2 750-kilowatt wave energy device at Leith Port in Edinburgh, Scotland. The machine will be towed to the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland, where it will be installed and tested, E.ON reported.

The installation of the Pelamis wave energy converter at EMEC is the first time the P2 machine has been tested anywhere in the world and also represents the UK’s first commercial supply contract within the marine energy sector, reports indicate.

At the launch ceremony, Dr. Paul Golby, Chief Executive of E.ON UK, said: “We’re delighted to be a part of such an innovative project. The event marks a milestone in marine technology and the next exciting step for renewable energy in the UK.”

Tom Delay, chief executive of the Carbon Trust, which awarded Pelamis funding from the Marine Renewables Proving Fund to develop and test the P2 device, said: “This is another important landmark which shows the UK’s marine energy industry is rapidly coming of age. We have a clear lead in this sector and must now capitalize on this to secure maximum benefit in creating new jobs and revenue for the UK. Having supported Pelamis with funding from the Marine Renewables Proving Fund, we look forward to continuing to work with them and E.ON testing the device and bringing it a step closer to commercial deployment.”

The device is 180 meters long and weighs approximately 1,500 tons.

The machine, called the “Vagr Atferd” (Norse for wave power), was named by Matthew Rendall of Stromness Primary School in Orkney, following a competition. Matthew and his family joined the First Minister at the port, where he officially launched and named the device.

Recently, Pelamis, Marine Current Turbines and other firms were named successful bidders for wave and tidal energy farm development leases in UK waters. The Crown Estate announced the names of winning bidders, which are part of the world’s first commercial wave and tidal leasing round.

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