Utility, tidal power firm to develop 8-MW U.K. project

Utility E.ON UK and tidal power developer Lunar Energy of the United Kingdom plan to develop an 8-MW tidal stream power project off the west coast of the U.K.

The partners said that early feasibility studies have been completed and they are reviewing a short-list of potential sites for the scheme. They plan for the project to be in operation by 2010.

The project is to use Rotech Tidal turbines developed by Lunar and its technology partner, Rotech Engineering. The design utilizes a horizontal-axis symmetrical turbine with a ducted design. It has a removable central cassette and may be deployed on the seabed with minimal preparation, holding down operation and maintenance costs, Lunar said.

�A tidal stream scheme on this scale, which will be one of the largest of its kind in the world, will allow us to both better understand how to harness the power of the tides and, just as importantly, to develop a new way of generating clean, reliable, and plentiful power,� E.ON UK Chief Executive Paul Golby said March 15.

Lunar’s technology has been supported from the early stages by the U.K.’s Department of Trade and Industry, the Scottish Executive, and Highlands &Islands Enterprise. Lunar is due to deploy a 1-MW unit at the European Marine Energy Center in the U.K.’s Orkney Islands in 2008. (HNN 2/22/07)

E.ON UK, which operates the U.K.’s Powergen utility, also is a hydropower operator and is developing a wave power project off the north coast of Cornwall, England. (HNN 8/23/06)

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