Mocean Energy has begun testing its Blue X wave energy prototype at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney.
The 20m long, 38-tonne wave machine was towed from Kirkwall to EMEC’s Scapa Flow test site over the last few days where it has been successfully moored and commissioned for initial sea trials.
Later this summer the Blue X will be moved to EMEC’s grid connected wave test site at Billia Croo on the west coast of Orkney, where it will be tested in more rigorous full sea conditions.
“This is a very exciting moment as we put our first prototype to test at sea. Following successful installation on Friday, Blue X generated its first power and continued to generate power, charging batteries, throughout the weekend,” said Mocean Energy Managing Director Cameron McNatt. “In the Scapa testing phase, we will test power production, comparing results against our numerical predictions, and we will test operations including towing, installation, removal, and access at sea. The device is standalone and operated wirelessly. A 4G connection allows us to send commands and download data from shore.”
Next year, Mocean Energy plans to connect the device to a subsea battery which will be used to power a remotely operated autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) – with potential applications offshore.
The deployment and demonstration of the Blue X at EMEC is being funded by Wave Energy Scotland and supported by Interreg North-West Europe’s Ocean DEMO project.
Mocean Energy deploy Blue X at EMEC Scapa Flow wave energy test site (Credit Colin Keldie)