The WATERS fund (Wave and Tidal Energy: Research, Development and Demonstration Support), an initiative developed by the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise with support from European Regional Development Funds, yesterday announced that grants were awarded to the following firms:

• RWE npower renewables – £6M to support construction of one of the world’s largest wave stations, the ten turbine 4MW Siadar project off the Western Isles.

• Aquamarine Power – £3.15M to support demonstration of Aquamarine’s Oyster 3 project at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney.

• OpenHydro – £1.85M to support a power conversion / control system to deliver a cost effective method of connecting marine energy devices in tidal arrays.

• AWS Ocean Energy – £1.39M to support tests in Loch Ness and the Cromarty Firth of AWSs wave energy converter, sections of which would join together to form the device’s ‘doughnut’ shape.

• Ocean Flow Energy – £560,000 to build and deploy the ‘Evopod’, a 35kW floating grid connected tidal energy turbine at Sanda Sound in South Kintyre.

“Our seas have unrivalled potential to generate clean, green energy and bring jobs, investment and know how to Scotland. We have a quarter of Europe’s potential tidal energy resource and a tenth of the wave capacity – a resource already drawing developers and innovators to Scotland’s seas as we have seen with planned activity in the Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters,” said Energy Minister Jim Mather. “This funding is another step on the road to a low carbon Scotland that maximises its resources for a sustainable future. Initial costs for marine energy are high and capital is needed – these grants will help attract further private investment. Our support will ensure a continuous stream of ideas and technologies can be tested, developed and refined at our world class testing centre on Orkney and elsewhere around Scotland.”