Magallanes redeploys ATIR tidal energy platform at EMEC
Spanish tidal energy developer Magallanes Renovables has reinstalled its 2MW ATIR tidal energy platform at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Scotland.
The reinstallation of Magallanes’ second generation 2MW tidal platform took place on 19 April 2021 at EMEC’s Fall of Warness test site.
The Magallanes team worked in collaboration with Orkney-based marine service provider Leask Marine, along with the Orkney Harbour Authority’s tug Thor, to install the platform in an operation lasting eight hours.
In the coming weeks, the ATIR will be connected to the UK national electricity grid, according to Magallanes.
Alejandro Marques de Magallanes, CEO and founder of Magallanes Renovables, said: “We are very pleased to have demonstrated that it is possible to build, launch, install, operate and maintain a tidal platform, in order to generate energy from tidal currents. We are delighted to again have successfully reinstalled the ATIR at EMEC.
“This is a great achievement for our dedicated team and we are now ready to take the next step to start generating electricity into the national grid in the near future”.
The 2 MW ATIR platform was initially launched in 2017 and underwent tow testing in Spain, prior to being installed and connected to the national grid at EMEC in Orkney in 2019.
Whilst at EMEC, the ATIR completed a structured test programme to optimise the system, which included validation, generation and operational maintenance tests.
In order to further optimise the performance of the ATIR, Magallanes transported the platform to the dry dock of Dales Marine in Edinburgh in 2020 for maintenance, supported by GAP, Leask Marine, Briggs Marine and Forth Port.
The maintenance was no mean feat, having to position the platform horizontally in the sea by using a system of buoys to fit into the dry dock via the locks, according to Magallanes.
During this positioning operation in Leith, maintenance tasks were carried out to optimise the platform, including antifouling and performance verification, all of which will allow the platform to operate more efficiently, the company noted.
Douglas Leask, managing director of Leask Marine who oversaw the operations, said: “This marks another major milestone in the tidal history story and after months of careful planning and close working between all the project partners Leask Marine were able to successfully execute the install operations, ready to be connected once again to the national grid.
“Orkney remains the centre of the green energy revolution and we are delighted to continue to demonstrate and develop world leading innovation for this sector”.
The testing of the ATIR is funded by the Interreg OceanDEMO and MaRINET2, part of the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.