Orbital marine tidal energy turbine UK Scotland o2

‘World’s most powerful tidal turbine’ comes on line


ORKNEY, July 29, 2021 – A turbine dubbed the “world’s most powerful tidal turbine” – Orbital Marine Power’s 2-MW O2 – has come on stream off the coast of Scotland and is now delivering power to the UK grid, the company said on Wednesday.

Situated at the European Marine Energy Centre in the Orkney Islands, the 680-tonne, 74-metre-long O2 installation was built by Scottish engineering firm Orbital Marine Power.

It is expected to operate for 15 years, meeting the electricity needs of 2,000 UK homes.

“Our vision is that this project is the trigger to the harnessing of tidal stream resources around the world to play a role in tackling climate change whilst creating a new, low-carbon industrial sector,” Orbital CEO Andrew Scott said.

The project is a key development for the UK’s bet on marine energy, and was partially funded by the Scottish government. Tidal speeds can surpass 3 metres per second in the Fall of Warness, where the European Marine Energy Centre is located.

“With our abundant natural resources, expertise and ambition, Scotland is ideally placed to harness the enormous global market for marine energy whilst helping deliver a net-zero economy,” Michael Matheson, Scotland’s cabinet secretary for net zero and energy, said.

Orbital said it plans to commercialise the O2 via multi-megawatt arrays.