The world’s first wave power machine to be sold to a utility company has celebrated its first anniversary since grid connection at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) with a series of technical achievements and no lost time incidents.
The E.ON machine was installed in October 2010. Since then a dedicated team of four Pelamis engineers, based permanently in Orkney, have helped implement a progressive testing programme, putting the machine through its paces in increasingly energetic sea conditions and progressing through a rigorous inspection regime. During each installation period the E.ON machine has been generating electricity into the national grid.
The E.ON Pelamis machine has reached a number of significant milestones, including:
* A collective 260,000 man-hours have been put into the construction, commissioning and testing of the machine, with no lost time incidents.
* Successful functional testing of the Pelamis machine and its associated systems, including development of remote machine monitoring from Pelamis headquarters in Leith.
* The tests have measured conversion efficiencies of greater than 70% in a range of conditions and for sustained periods.
* Establishing use of the improved machine connection and disconnection system with machine installation achieved in less than 100 minutes and disconnection in 12 minutes.
Ed Maycock, the Orkney Project Manager for Pelamis, said: “This project has been a great success so far, with many challenges overcome and with many technical achievements outstripping our expectations. We’re committed to working with the local community on the development of wave energy off the shores of Orkney and bringing further employment to the Islands.”
Per Hornung Pedersen, Chief Executive Officer of Pelamis, said: “E.ON is on a journey with Pelamis to test and prove the performance of its machine over time.
“E.ON’s bold vision for our technology means wave energy has every chance of success in becoming an important source of renewable electricity and a new manufacturing industry for Scotland. Passing these milestones is important for the wave power industry as it confirms Pelamis is on the right trajectory for growth – wave farms will happen, and soon.”
Offshore WIND staff, November 24, 2011; Image: pelamiswave