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31 October 2018

Scottish led European project announces funding for eight ocean energy demonstration projects

The Ocean Energy ERA-NET Cofund (OCEANERA-NET COFUND) consortium partners have announced 8 million Euro funding for eight research and demonstration projects in the field of ocean (marine) energy.

These projects will test and validate new technologies for wave, tidal and ocean thermal energy production.  

The overall aims of OCEANERA-NET COFUND are to maintain and grow Europe’s world leading position in ocean energy, to help bring innovative low carbon energy solutions closer to commercial deployment, drive down the levelised cost of energy (LCoE), create growth and jobs and reduce the environmental impact of the energy system.

The results of Cofunded Joint Call 2017 – funded by OCEANERA-NET COFUND partners and the European Commission - were publicly announced today by Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the Islands at the Scottish Government, Paul Wheelhouse.

Jan Reid, Team Leader in the energy and clean technologies team at Scottish Enterprise said: “OCEANERA-NET COFUND is an EU-funded project that aims to support demonstration projects which will address the current challenges in the ocean energy sector and support the development of the first commercial devices and arrays.

“We are delighted to announce eight of the projects selected under the Cofunded Joint Call.  The companies involved represent leading developers in ocean energy and supply chain companies who, working together, aim to demonstrate a range of solutions which will have potential application across the sector.

“We would like to thank all the OCEANERA-NET COFUND partners and the Scottish Government for their support in bringing together this exciting suite of projects.

Matthijs Soede, research policy officer at the European Commission said: “It is great to see national and regional funding organisations working together to help the ocean energy sector.

“In this way developers can work easier together with international suppliers and research institutes. Cooperation is important to bring the sector to the market.”

The total grant funding approved for companies and research organisations involved in projects is 7.8 million Euro; 2.6 million Euro will come from the European Union as co-funding with the national and regional funding organisations, which include Scottish Enterprise, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, the Swedish Energy Agency, Region Pays de la Loire, Region Bretagne and Centro Para el Desarrollo Technologico Industrial​ (Spain).

The projects are just getting started and over the next three years will develop, test and validate new technologies and approaches which will contribute to lowering the cost of energy and accelerating the commercialisation of the sector.

Out of all the projects, five involve Scottish partners, with total grants of £2.7m made up of funding from the European Union and Scottish Government.

 

The eight projects announced today are:

SEABLADE - systematic evaluation and analysis of blades for a 2mw floating tidal energy converter – Led by Irish company EireComposites, working with Scottish tidal developer Orbital Marine Power. This project will accelerate the development of a commercial-ready, cost-effective tidal blade product by testing on a two mega watt Orbital turbine. Gather sufficient test data to validate a 20-year design life for the blades will result in more reliable blades that will lead to reduced maintenance and increased productivity and revenue.

TOPFLOTE - Targeted optimal pitch module for floating tidal energy - Led by Scottish tidal energy developer Orbital Marine Power in partnership with Swedish supply chain company AB SKF. The project will design, fabricate and test a blade pitch regulation module for floating tidal generation units. Two units will be incorporated for performance testing into Orbital Marine Power’s upcoming floating 2MW tidal turbine. Integration of a two-bladed pitch system module will enable optimal performance of the drive-train and deliver a number of direct and indirect cost benefits.

RESOURCECODE - Resource characterisation to reduce the cost of energy through coordinated data enterprise – Led by the Orkney based European Marine Energy Centre, with the University of Edinburgh and partners in France and Ireland. Create an integrated marine data toolbox that will enable developers of ocean energy devices and arrays, and their suppliers, to make optimised technical and commercial decisions. The project brings together an international consortium of businesses and test sites supported by established academic partners that seek to increase the competitiveness of wave and tidal energy across Europe.

CF2T - Competitive Foundation for Tidal Turbine – Led by the Brittany-based tidal company Sabella, with partners in Spain and Sweden. This project will investigate ways of reducing capital expenditure costs and improving reliability of the foundation structure for a tidal turbine, thereby reducing the overall cost of energy. This will have three main components: hybrid material, modular foundation and monitoring frameworks to improve reliability of the foundation.

INNOTEX - Innovative Thermal Exchangers – Led by French company Naval Energies, with a Spanish partner, this project focuses on ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC). The objective is to validate the performance of an innovative heat exchanger technology. The results will make a significant contribution to the development of future OTEC commercial plants.

SPhorcis -  Reshaping eforcis: wave energy converter for offshore small power applications – Led by Spanish company Smalle Technologies, working with SmartBay Ireland. SPhorics is an innovative wave technology which will harvest energy from two axes instead of just one, to give new scope for off-grid low power production, which has many applications, including supplying energy for offshore equipment.

UMACK - Universal mooring, anchor & connectivity kit demonstration – Led by Swedish wave energy developer CorPower Ocean with Scottish partners Sustainable Marine Energy, TTI Renewables, European Marine Energy Centre and the University of Edinburgh. UMACK will develop and demonstrate a technical anchor for multiple sea-bed types and a quick connect solution, alongside the CorPower power take off system, de-risking the overall demonstration of full-scale devices ahead of full system demonstration of the CorPower device.

WEP+ - wave+ Energy Project – Led by Neureus Technologies from Spain with partners from France, the Canary Islands and Scotland (Orkney based Aquatera). The aim of this project is to deliver smoothed and code compliant power to an established electrical grid through the operation of the point absorber wave energy technology in conjunction with a newly designed energy storage system.

Second Call for Projects to be launched early 2019:

The consortium has also announced that it will be running a second joint call for projects, due to open in early 2019. Potential applicants can now submit their interest in the new call to karen.fraser@scotent.co.uk. Call documents will be published on the project website early in 2019 – https://www.oceancofund.eu/

For further information, please contact Scottish Enterprise:

fiona.mcgowan@scotent.co.uk

 Karen Fraser, Specialist, Energy, OCEANERA-NET COFUND Coordinator

Email: karen.fraser@scotent.co.uk

 Background information

OCEANERA-NET COFUND is an initiative involving the Basque Country, Brittany, Ireland, Pays de la Loire, Portugal, Scotland, Spain and Sweden. It is part funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation. The project partners are shown below.

The ERA-NET (European Research Area Network) Cofund model is a mechanism designed to combine funding from nation and regional agencies and the European Commission, to support collaborative, cross-border research and development projects which combine the knowledge and resources of companies and researchers to solve common problems.

OCEANERA-NET COFUND is a five year project which started on 1 January 2017. It will run two joint calls for collaborative projects and a range of events and activities designed to encourage collaboration and disseminate project results.

The calls are designed to connect project developers in offshore renewables with innovative supply chain companies and research organisations, to work together to develop and test new solutions for the challenges in bringing ocean energy to the commercial deployment stage. They build on and complement other support at European and national level by encouraging a joined up approach and sharing of knowledge and expertise.

As the race to decarbonise our energy system and tackle the energy trilemma of security, affordability and environmental sustainability continues, ocean energy (capturing the energy from waves, tides and differences in ocean temperature and salinity levels) can make a significant contribution to Europe’s renewable supply and local energy systems, while at the same time building on Europe’s current industrial leadership to create new jobs and export opportunities in a growing global market.

Notes to editors:

OCEANERA-NET COFUND partners funding projects selected under the Cofunded Joint Call 2017 are:

 

Scottish Enterprise (Coordinator)​

Scotland, UK​

Karen Fraser:​ karen.fraser@scotent.co.uk

Région Bretagne

Brittany, France​

Claire Le Tertre : claire.letertre@bretagne.bzh

Région de Pays de la Loire, ​

Pays de la Loire, France​

Charlotte Sugliani: c.sugliani@agence-paysdelaloire.fr

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland​

Ireland​

Darren Coppinger:  Darren.Coppinger@seai.ie

Centro Para el Desarrollo Technologico Industrial​

Spain (national)​

Gema Del Rio Castro: gema.delrio@cdti.es  ​

Statens Energimyndighet  (Swedish Energy Agency)​

Sweden​

Maria Olsson​: maria.olsson@energimyndigheten.se

Marit Marsh Strömberg:

marit.marsh-stromberg@energimyndigheten.se

Contact information

Fiona McGowan
fiona.mcgowan@scotent.co.uk

Scottish Enterprise is Scotland's main economic development agency and aims to deliver a significant, lasting effect on the Scottish economy. Our role is to help identify and exploit the best opportunities for economic growth. We support ambitious Scottish companies to compete within the global marketplace and help build Scotland's globally competitive sectors. We also work with a range of partners in the public and private sectors to attract new investment to Scotland and to help create a world-class business environment.

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