Mocean Energy has started testing its prototype Blue X wave energy at the European Marine Energy Center (EMEC) in Orkney.
The 20m long, 38 ton wave machine has been towed from Kirkwall to EMEC’s Scapa Flow test site over the past few days, where it has been successfully moored and put into service for the first tests at sea.
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 under more severe open sea conditions.
“It’s a very exciting time as we put our first prototype to sea trial. After a successful installation on Friday, Blue X generated its first electricity and continued to generate electricity, charging the batteries, throughout the weekend, ”said Cameron McNatt, Managing Director of Mocean Energy. “In the Scapa test phase, we will test power generation, comparing the results to our numerical predictions, and we will test operations, including towing, installation, removal and sea access. L The device is self-contained and works wirelessly. A 4G connection allows us to send commands and download data from the shore.
Next year, Mocean Energy plans to connect the device to an underwater battery that will be used to power a remote-controlled autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) – with potential applications at sea.
The deployment and demonstration of the Blue X at EMEC is funded by Wave Energy Scotland and supported by the Ocean DEMO project of Interreg North-West Europe.
Mocean Energy deploys Blue X at the EMEC Scapa Flow wave energy test site (Credit Colin Keldie)