Innovate UK funds Instream’s floating tidal demonstrator

Instream Energy Systems and ITPEnergised have secured funding from the UK’s innovation agency Innovate UK to build and test a full-scale floating tidal stream energy device.

The work on the design of the device, that will feature multiple vertical axis turbines mounted on a single floating platform, has already started, ITPEnergised has informed.

The device will be deployed and tested in early 2019 as part of the Instream Tidal Energy Research (InTER) project, according to ITP Energised.

The project, led by ITPEnergised, uses vertical axis hydrokinetic turbine technology created by Canadian technology developer Instream Energy Systems and technology defense specialists BAE Systems.

Gino Bawn, ITPEnergised Project Manager, said: “Instream’s floating design aims to reduce the installation costs of tidal stream devices. Their vertical axis turbine design enables the technology to access shallow water resources no available to other technologies, opening up new markets.”

Joe Hussey, Engineering Manager UK at Instream Energy Systems, added: “This project has supported the scaling up of our technology and has enabled us to grow our UK team. The technology, which has been proven in river and canal environments has global appeal with the potential to tap into previously inaccessible marine resources.”

The £1.48 million InTER project is part of Instream’s diversification from inland river and waterways into the marine environment, building on the knowledge gained in three previous demonstrator projects in the USA and Canada.

Co-funded by Innovate UK, the project brings together a consortium of industry experts including ITPEnergised, Instream Energy Systems, Tension Technology International, Leask Marine, Plymouth University, and A&P Falmouth.