Construction starting on 2MW tidal turbine

Orbital O2 will be capable of generating over 2MW from tidal stream resources Orbital O2 will be capable of generating over 2MW from tidal stream resources

A multi million pound contract has been signed for the construction of what is set to be the world’s most powerful tidal turbine.

Orbital Marine Power Ltd has awarded the main manufacturing contract for the company’s first commercial O2 tidal turbine to Scottish based TEXO Group which will carry out the work at its quayside facilities in Dundee.

The multi-million-pound contract marks the start of major construction for the company’s new tidal turbine, the O2, which builds on the hugely successful 2MW SR2000 turbine which generated over 3GWh in its first year of testing at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, Scotland.

The O2, capable of generating over 2MW from tidal stream resources, will become the world’s most powerful tidal turbine when it enters operation later next year (2020) as part of a long term project at EMEC and features several innovations focused on further reducing the cost of energy from the company’s disruptive technology.

Andrew Scott, Orbital’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “This is a flagship engineering project for the emerging tidal sector and we are delighted to be working with TEXO Group to showcase the very capable supply chain we are fortunate to have around us in Scotland and the wider UK.”

“The results that we achieved with the SR2000 over the past two years are a convincing validation of our low-cost approach to generating clean, predictable power from tidal stream energy. The Orbital team are really excited to be building on that success with the O2 which we are confident will further reduce costs and cement our position at the forefront of this exciting new renewable sector.”

Robert Dalziel, Managing Director, TEXO Group, said: ”We are proud and privileged to be awarded this prestigious contract. The O2 is a pioneering project that will transform the future of tidal energy on a global scale and will be a showcase for the very best in Scottish engineering.”

Robert added: “Our team has a wealth of experience in marine engineering with particular expertise in offshore oil and gas – this project enables us to showcase our vast capabilities for the offshore renewables sector.”

The O2 project has been financed in a number of ways including EU Horizon 2020 funding and a £7m crowdfunding bond which Orbital successfully raised at the start of the year, one of the largest peer-to-peer debentures in UK history. The project also benefits from previously offered market support for the sector via the Renewable Obligation.

By Jake Frith

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