FORCE Starts Cable Laying in Minas Passage (Video)
The Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy (FORCE) started to install up to four underwater power cables in the world’s highest tides. These cables will allow tidal turbines in the Minas Passage, Bay of Fundy to deliver power to Nova Scotia’s electricity grid. The FORCE team successfully installed the second cable on Sunday, Oct. 19.
“This operation is the final piece of the FORCE facility,” said Tony Wright, General Manager of FORCE. “Once installed, tidal developers can plug their devices into the cable and connect to the power grid.”
Wright said: “We’ll be laying up to four cables over the next two or three weeks, depending on a number of variables, including weather.”
The operation will include a number of vessels – including barges, tugs, and other safety vessels.
Each 34.5-kilovolt cable has a capacity of up to 16 megawatts – approximately enough to power over 6,000 homes during peak flows. The cables vary between 2-3km in length, weighing over 100 tonnes each. “The Minas Passage is a challenging work environment,” said Anne-Marie Belliveau, Director of Operations at FORCE. “And while most cables are laid from shore to shore in low flowing currents, this operation is unique: we are leaving one end of the cables in some of the world’s most powerful tides. The strength of the tide and potential weather mean safety is our first priority.”
For safety and logistical reasons, FORCE requests other vessels stay well clear of the marine operation (a minimum of 500 metres). As well, the Parrsboro wharf may be closed for defined periods during the operation. FORCE is working with all wharf users, including Fishers, and the Parrsboro Harbour Commission in an effort to minimize disruption to routine activities.
FORCE is grateful to the people of Parrsboro for their ongoing support of the project, and apologizes for any inconvenience during this operational period.