open-hydroOpenHydro, a subsidiary of DCNS, specializing in tidal energy systems and Alderney Renewable Energy (ARE) signed an agreement to create a joint venture, Race Tidal Ltd.

The two companies will combine their expertise and resources to create a tidal turbine with a capacity of 300 MW near Alderney, one of the Channel Islands. The agreement was signed during the show Thetis EMR held at the Cité de la Mer in Cherbourg.

The island of Alderney is part of the Channel Islands and territorial waters have a bigger potential in the world in terms of tidal energy. This potential could eventually lead to the power supply of 1.5 million homes. First step in the operation of this exceptional resource, tidal turbine developed and will have 150 turbines of 2 MW each which will produce electricity for over 150,000 homes.

The agreement between AER and OpenHydro is coherent with the project FAB Link Limited, a joint venture between AER and Transmission Investment LLP which should allow to achieve electrical interconnection between France, Alderney and Britain. This interconnection will allow the export of electricity generated by the Alderney tidal farm to European networks. It will include the exchange of energy between France and Britain. FAB Link project is in association with the French network operator RTE.

OpenHydro and AER working closely for many years (OpenHydro is a shareholder of AER up to 31%). The two companies will bring their expertise to this project. In 2008, AER has received approval from the Alderney States to achieve over 65 years of marine renewable energy projects in the territorial waters of Alderney. For its part, will provide the OpenHydro turbines to be manufactured in a factory Cherbourg designed to supply turbines future farms turbines installed off the French coast.

Over the next three years, and OpenHydro AER will work closely with the States of Alderney Alderney Commission for Renewable Energy, local communities and stakeholders to carry out preliminary environmental impact studies to deploy a tidal turbine of 300 MW. This farm should be fully operational by 2020, the date to coincide with the commissioning of the interconnection FAB Link.

Commenting on the announcement of the creation of this joint venture, Thierry Kalanquin, OpenHydro President and Director of the Energy and Marine Infrastructure DCNS Division, said: “We welcome this new stage in the development of energy tidal waters of Alderney.’s initial agreement with AER, which dates back to 2007, had laid the foundations essential to the definition of our business plan. Today’s announcement is another important milestone towards the commercial project in tidal. Our partnership with AER will now allow the creation of a tidal power of 300 MW in the waters of Alderney farm.”

“The economic development of tidal turbine project in the waters of Alderney will provide Europe with a new source of renewable energy, clean and predictable, and increase the security of our energy supplies. The partnership we have developed with OpenHydro is an essential piece of the puzzle for the development of one of the most important projects of marine renewable energy in Europe “concluded Nick Horler, President of AER.

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