Indonesian forester completes off-grid in-stream installation

An international team is hoping their installation of an in-stream tidal turbine will serve as a model for other small-scale micro grids in southeast Asia.

The project was a collaboration between Schottel Hydro, OceanPixel, Aquatera and the Energy Research Institute at Nanyang Technological University, which developed and installed a turbine near an industrial site owned by PT Bintuni Utama Murni Wood Industries (PT BUMWI).

PT BUMWI — a supplier for Green Forest Product & Tech Pte. Ltd. (GFPT) — currently draws all power used for its wood chipping operation from diesel generators. However, an assessment by OceanPixel determined the current in nearby Bintuni Bay runs at about 2.5 meters per second, making it suitable for an in-stream installation.

OceanPixel then worked with Nanyang Tech, Aquaterra and Schottel to complete a further analysis of the site. The group then worked to devise “the most suitable and cost effective deployment strategy” that covered the “floating platform design mooring, turbine attachment and power delivery,” according to OceanPixel director Dr. Michael Lochivnar Sim Abundo.

The turbine provide by Schottel is one of its SIT 250 units, which is suspended below a floating barge that allows for easy inspection and maintenance.

Developers of the project say the isolate micro grid the turbine now supports could be emulated with ease.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for

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