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Company unveil plans for tidal energy project

tidal energyTIDAL ENERGY LTD held their office opening in Pembroke Dock on Monday highlighting their first wind turbine prototype. Tidal Energy Ltd (TEL) is an innovative tidal stream technology company preparing to install and test at sea a full-scale prototype tidal stream generating device, known as DeltaStream to be tested at Ramsey Sound off St Davids.

TEL plan to develop a demonstration array project, with developers Eco2 Ltd at St Davis Head, also off the coast of Pembrokeshire, with the ambition to be the technology of choice for tidal energy development companies.

DeltaStream is a tidal energy conversion unit, the size of a seven story building, that generates electrical power. It is 20 metres tall and is primarily designed to be located on the seabed in areas with high tidal steam flows, but could also be installed in suitable rivers and estuaries. When mounted in tidal areas, it generated power during both the flow and ebb of the tide.

DeltaStream has a triangular main base frame with rock feet and has been designed to have three independent water turbine generators, which are mounted horizontally.

Maintenance and repair can be quickly executed on the deck of a lifting barge or at a dedicated shore base. In this event, DeltaSteam’s use of three independent water turbine generators insures ongoing power generation and operating venue.

TEL is installing a single DeltaSteam unit off the coast of Pembrokeshire at Ramsey Sound for 12 months. The project will demonstrate the capability of DeltaStream as a tidalstream generator and provide evidence on how the device and environment interact.

Chris Williams, Development Director of Tidal Energy Ltd said: “Only by putting something in the water will we understand how nature will react. We have built an underwater acoustic sonar, which shows us where the animals are, as well as hydrophones to listen enable us to hear them over 700 metres.

The Herald questioned Mr Williams about the risks of using the off shore wind turbines, and he said: “There are two risks: collision and the possibility of having to re-locate, though if there was an issue we wouldn’t be doing it.

Mr Williams told The Herald that TEL are aiming for it to be ready in May 2014.