SeaQurrent ‘flies’ its tidal kite

SeaQurrent has conducted the first tests on its ‘multi wing’ tidal kite technology at the MARIN research institute in the Netherlands.

The prototype for the test at MARIN was designed by Dutch tidal developer SeaQurrent, formerly known as SeaCurrent, in cooperation with Goos Watersport which also built the device.

SeaQurrent’s TidalKite consists of several subsystems and wings, and the kite itself is tethered to the seabed and squeezes a pressurized fluid to a hydraulic motor, which generates power.

Commenting on the MARIN testing, Youri Wentzel, CEO of SeaQurrent, said: “The results from the tests at MARIN are very encouraging for our plans and give us confidence for the further development of the TidalKite system. We expect that the technology is ready in 2019, and can compete on price with offshore wind within several years.”

One TidalKite power plant generates 500kW, which is enough to provide ‘green electricity’ to 700 households each year, according to SeaQurrent.

TidalKite system is being developed in collaboration with partners, including the University of Groningen which is focused on theoretical modeling and the execution of specialized laboratory tests to further optimise the hydrodynamic properties of the system.

Eize Stamhuis of the University of Groningen said: “The field test of the prototype at MARIN shows that the prototype already generates large forces at low velocities, that are in line with the predictions of the theoretical model.”

SeaQurrent received support from the EU-funded FORESEA program last year to advance its TidalKite system through testing and demonstration of the integration of a multi wing kite system with the power take-off.