Tidal Energy Powering Scotland to Green Future

Atlantis Resources selects Lockheed Martin for design work on 400 MW tidal project in Pentland Firth
 

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Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle, and now, its northern neighbor, Scotland, is looking to a green future as well with the development of a 400 MW renewable energy facility powered by the tides.

Lockheed Martin recently received a contract to provide front-end design work for the MeyGen project  in Scotland’s Pentland Firth from Atlantis Resources Corp., whose AR1000 tidal turbines will power the majority of the development.

By 2020, Atlantis and its joint venture partners Morgan Stanley and International Power GDF Suez expect the project to generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of 40,000 Scottish homes.

The project achieved a major milestone in August when Atlantis’ initial 1 MW AR1000 became Scotland’s first commercial scale tidal turbine linked to the electric grid when it was connected at the European Marine Energy Centre. It will be tested over the next two years ahead of the roll-out of the full project.

“It is wonderful to see this commercial-scale tidal turbine connect to the grid from Orkney waters,” said Neil Kermode, managing director of the European Marine Energy Centre. “The marine energy industry in Scotland continues to gather pace and is working towards world-leading targets in terms of deployment and generation of renewable energy.”

Tidal turbines work like an underwater wind turbine. Instead of air, the tides’ ebb and flow force the blades to spin, which rotate the turbine and powers an electrical generator.

Lockheed Martin has been involved with alternative energy for more than 30 years. In addition to the MeyGen project, Lockheed Martin is working with Atlantis to develop a tidal turbine as part of Nova Scotia’s Fundy Ocean Research for Energy project.

“At Lockheed Martin, we’ve been making maritime systems since the 1970s,” said Dan Heller, vice president of Lockheed Martin’s New Ventures business. “We know how to make products that can perform in the demanding maritime environment. Our experience in alternative energy and expertise in building maritime systems will help make the MeyGen project a reality.”

Posted September 15, 2011