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Key to Harnessing Ocean Energy is 'Evolution, Not Revolution'

30th June 2012
Key to Harnessing Ocean Energy is 'Evolution, Not Revolution'

#POWER FROM THE SEA - Martin McAdam of Aquamarine Power talks to The Irish Times about his company's efforts to harness power from the sea.

The Edinburgh-based firm has spent a number of years and some £60 million (€74.5 million) developing its sea surface instruments - using technology researched at Queen's University Belfast - at locations in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the United States.

Most recently, the business has been overseeing the final stages of an underwater base off Orkney to complete testing of its latest wave energy 'harvester' prototype, the Oyster 800.

As previously reported on, the Oyster 800 can generate an incredible 800 kilowatts by way of a giant hinged flap that juts out of the water.

Each passing wave closes the flap shut like a clamshell, with the resultant hydraulic pressure driving an onshore turbine.

It marks an impressive development, but as McAdam says, the wave energy sector still requires patience from those who provide its funding.

“We need to perfect the technology that we have got," says the Aquamarine chief executive, who adds that the objective is “not revolution anymore, but evolution”.

“We shouldn’t be overambitious," he says. "We should get the technology to a stage where it is robust and cost effective. In 10 years’ time, if we in Scotland have somewhere up to 500MW, then that would be a successful industry.”

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Power From the Sea
MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy is a contributor covering all things on the water, from boating and wildlife to science and business

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