Canada, UK Team Up for Tidal Energy Research

Nova Scotia has launched two new international research grants to further advance its position in the tidal industry.

The two projects, worth $1.43 million, will help governments, industry and researchers better understand the effect tidal technology has on the marine environment, and the impact of the marine environment on that technology.

This is the first announcement under the memorandum of understanding signed between the government, Offshore Energy Research Association and the United Kingdom.

The projects have been selected for funding through a partnership between the Offshore Energy Research Association, a Nova Scotia based not-for-profit research group, and Innovate UK, a government-funded business and innovation organization.

The first project is led by British Columbia-based Rockland Scientific, in partnership with Dalhousie University and Black Rock Tidal Power, along with United Kingdom-based FloWave TT, European Marine Energy Centre and Ocean Array Systems.

Research partners will develop new sensor systems to measure turbulence, which allows developers to design and deploy technology that performs better in strong tides and currents.

The research will be carried out in both Canadian and United Kingdom waters, including at the Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy in the Bay of Fundy. Testing will also be conducted at the University of Edinburgh’s FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility and at the European Marine Energy Centre in Scotland’s Orkney Islands.

This is the first EUREKA-designated research project carried out in Nova Scotia.

The second project is led by Nova Scotia-based Emera in partnership with OpenHydro Canada, Ocean Sonics, SMRU Consulting Canada and Acadia University, along with United Kingdom-based Tritech and Sea Mammal Research Unit. This project will improve the tracking of fish and marine mammals in the Bay of Fundy.

The system will be used at the Cape Sharp Tidal berth at the Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy, gathering information to assess the impact of its turbine on marine life.

Offshore Energy Research Association’s investment of $500,000 represents Nova Scotia’s contribution to these projects.

Innovate UK is contributing $331,000, with remaining funding being provided by federal government agencies and private industry in both Canada and the United Kingdom.

Image: OpenHydro (Illustration) 

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