The MeyGen project is a 398 megawatt tidal energy facility which will begin construction in Pentland Firth later in the year. Once complete, the major tidal energy project will supply clean and renewable electricity to the UK National Grid, provide power for approximately 175,000 homes in Scotland and support over 100 jobs.
Ed Davey, UK Energy Secretary, said: “Wave and tidal power have the potential to provide more than 20 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs and Meygen could pave the way for future projects in the Pentland Firth.” He further added the project will put Scotland “on the map as a global leader in marine technology.”
More than £20m of the £51m funding required to construct the first phase of the project has come from the Scottish government and Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). A further £10m was given in grants from the UK government and £10m investment from the Crown Estate which manages the UK seabed.
The completed scheme will comprise of 269 squat, three-bladed turbines on the seabed of Pentland Firth’s Inner Sound – the stretch of water that separates the Scottish mainland from Stroma Island. It is proposed that the turbines be installed in a series of phases. The first phase of the project will see 86 turbines installed which will have an 86-megawatt capacity. The installation will be deployed over two years and information provided from this initial phase will be used to increase understanding for subsequent phases.
A substation will be constructed as well as a grid connection and the installation of power export cables. It is anticipated that as many as 61 turbines could be installed by 2020.
Meygen Limited is 100% owned by Atlantis Resources and was established in 2010 solely for the purposes of developing the Inner Sound tidal site. Project Director, Tim Cornelius, said: “I am proud that Atlantis will become the first company to successfully develop a project of this kind, at this size, making Atlantis the first independent power producer from a tidal array.”
“Meygen is one of the most exciting and innovative renewable energy developments in the world, making the long-awaited arrival of tidal stream generation as a serious, large-scale player in global energy markets.”
Photo courtesy of Atlantis Resources Ltd.