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Two Japanese companies have signed a joint development agreement with Ireland’s headquarters, DP Energy, to work on the initial phase of a tidal energy project in Canada.
In statements released earlier this week Chubu Electric Power and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, or “K” Line, said the agreement concerns the Uisce Tapa Tidal Energy project. The development is located at the Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy in the Bay of Fundy, an entrance between the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.
Both Chubu Electric Power and “K” Line described it as “the first tidal energy project in which a Japanese company will participate overseas”.
According to DP Energy, the first phase of Uisce Tapa – Irish for “fast water” – is centered around three 1.5-megawatt turbines. The second aims to increase the capacity of the project to 9 MW.
Uisce Tapa is backed by a 15-year power purchase agreement with Nova Scotia Power Incorporated, which comes in at 530 Canadian dollars (about $ 422) per megawatt. It is also benefiting from a grant of approximately $ 30 million Canadian dollars from Natural Resources Canada.
In its announcement Wednesday, DP Energy described Fundy Bay as “being home to some of the world’s highest tides.” At maximum surface speed, tidal currents are “capable of exceeding 10 knots” or 5 meters per second, he added.
The project is being approved for approval by Fisheries and Oceans Canada, according to Chubu Electric Power and “K” Line. If all goes according to plan, the first turbine will begin operations in 2023, followed by two more in 2026.
The news comes in the same week that tidal energy business Nova Innovation said it has been able to move forward with a project focused on the scale of tidal turbine production after receiving funding from the Scottish government.
The £ 2 million ($ 2.77 million) funding boost, announced Thursday, will be used to support the Manufacturing and Logistics Company’s project for tidal energy, also known as VOLT.
VOLT will “develop the first European assembly line for the mass manufacture of tidal turbines,” according to Nova, and also “test innovative techniques and tools to ship, implement and monitor turbines worldwide.”
Last week another company, Orbital Marine Power, said its O2 turbine had started generating grid-connected energy at the European Marine Energy Center in Orkney, an archipelago in the north of the Scottish mainland. .
The 2-megawatt O2 has been dubbed “the world’s most powerful tidal turbine”, weighs 680 tonnes and is 74 meters long.