Alstom recently announced that the 1MW tidal power station had produced electricity on the tidal test of the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) site off the Orkney Islands, Scotland.

After a successful test completed on a 500 kW turbine, it is the second tidal power station Alstom to produce electricity on the grid.

This new phase should allow the French industry to position itself at the forefront of developing this technology. It also stated that the turbines of 500 kW and 1 MW models had already suffered “extensive testing”, the last of which took place now in real conditions in Scotland in the project consortium REDAPT (Reliable Data Acquisition Platform for Tidal).

With targets for further improvements to the tidal energy technology, in-depth analyzes and tests are carried out in different operating off the Orkney conditions. They are expected to continue throughout 2013, for a period of 18 months. Also, according to Alstom, the next step is to install the device drivers before the start of full commercial production.

“We are pleased to announce that our 1 MW tidal turbine has produced for the first time on the electricity network. This is a major step as we move towards the commercialization of this technology and we continue to study the marine environment, in preparation for tenders to be launched soon in France and the United Kingdom, “said Rob Stevenson, Vice President of Alstom’s Ocean Energy.

Hydroelectric Alstom the technology is based on a rotor with variable pitch blades 3, having a diameter of 18 meters. A standard powertrain and power electronics are located in the nacelle. 22 meters long, it is installed on separate foundations based on the seabed and weighs less than 150 tons.

“The tidal presents a series of important assets.”

First, it is easy to carry, “buoyancy enables easy deployment and recovery in one tidal cycle, using small vessels, which reduces installation costs and maintenance.”

Then she has a smart nacelle “thrusters guide the car depending on the direction of the tide, making it easy to manage the comings and goings of tides and maximize energy production.”

Finally, thanks to its efficient blades, the pitch of the tidal can be modified to control the load on the tidal and maximize the use of local tidal conditions.

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