Fortum, DCNS, AW-Energy sign agreement for wave energy project in France

A research and development agreement signed by Fortum, DCNS and AW-Energy will lead to a new 1.5 MW wave energy project off the Brittany coast in northwest France.

Per the agreement, Fortum will be responsible for the project’s development and serve as owner of the marine power demonstration park. Meanwhile, DCNS will manage the site development and construction work, and AW-Energy will contribute its “WaveRoller” generating units.

“This demonstration project is an ingenious European industrial match combining the best of Finnish and French expertise in renewable energy,” Fortum Executive Vice President of Power Matty Ruotsala said. “For the very first time, we can now bring together Fortum’s expertise in CO2-free power production, DCNS industry expertise in marine energy, AW-Energy’s technology solution and the commitment of the Brittany region.”

The WaveRoller is a submerged unit that relies on back-and-forth wave movements to move a hinged panel. AW-Energy and Metso have previously tested a WaveRoller unit off the coast of Peniche, Portugal.

“This is an important milestone towards the commercialization of the WaveRoller technology,” AW-Energy CEO John Liljelund said. “Wave energy is indeed the world’s densest renewable energy sources, with huge power generating potential. We are excited to be able to take advantage of the skills of our partners.”

AW-Energy’s development has been provided in part by Fortum, is also currently working with Seabased Industries to develop a 10 MW wave energy project off the west coast of Sweden.

The Brittany coast was also the site of an Electricite de France (EDF) and OpenHydro Group Ltd. sea test that was announced in September 2011.

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