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Wave tech powers UK grid

|7 April 2017|


A Finnish wave technology company has successfully supplied electricity to the UK grid system thanks to the support of a European funded research and innovation programme.

Wello’s Penguin wave energy converter (WEC) – installed by Orkney-based Green Marine – demonstrated its capabilities at the Billia Cro grid-connected site based at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Scotland.

The test was conducted as part of the Clean Energy From Ocean Waves (CEFOW) initiative being coordinated by multi-national energy utility Fortum and funded by the European Commission’s research and innovation programme Horizon 2020.

Mikko Muoniovaara, senior project manager at Fortum, said: “This is a very exciting period in the project for us, and the Wello office in Orkney has been buzzing with people eager to watch the screens showing the live generation feeds. This last month has proven the viability of the Penguin concept, as not only can the technology survive in the harsh waves around Orkney, but it can generate power from them. For Fortum, this is very promising progress.”

It is a significant moment for the CEFOW project which is working to progress the Penguin tech through to commercialisation by building the UK’s first ever grid-connected wave energy array.

Neil Kermode, EMEC managing director, added: “This is a tremendous milestone for Wello and all CEFOW partners, but also for the wave energy sector as a whole. Not only has Wello’s Penguin survived heavy swell and stormy conditions since being deployed, it is now generating power into the local grid.
“Congratulations to everyone who has worked towards this moment, and we look forward to the future learning that will come from this project.”

Two more WEC’s will be installed at EMEC by 2020 as part of the CEFOW.


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