Photo: Simec Atlantis' AR500 ahead of installation in Japan (Courtesy of Kyuden Mirai Energy)

Simec Atlantis tidal kit starts producing power in Japan

The AR500 tidal energy generation system, designed and built by Simec Atlantis Energy, has started generating clean electricity in Japan following its installation off Goto Island chain late in January.

Photo of Simec Atlantis' AR500 ahead of installation in Japan (Courtesy of Kyuden Mirai Energy)
Simec Atlantis’ AR500 ahead of installation in Japan (Courtesy of Kyuden Mirai Energy)

The tidal turbine clocked its first 10MWh of generation within the first ten days of operation and is now producing clean electricity in Japan, Simec Atlantis informed.

The 500kW tidal energy system was installed on 23 January 2021, Simec Atlantis’ partner in the project Kyuden Mirai Energy informed earlier.

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The project included leasing tidal generation equipment and providing offshore construction services to Kyuden Mirai Energy for a pilot turbine located in the straits of Naru Island, within the southern Japanese Goto island chain.

The AR500 tidal turbine was assembled and tested at Simec Atlantis’ operations and maintenance base at Nigg Energy Park in Scotland, before shipping to Japan.

Offshore construction of the tidal generation equipment took just five days to complete, beginning with the laying of the cable, landing of the foundation structure and ballast to the sea floor, connection of the cable, and finally the installation of the turbine to the foundation.

Graham Reid, CEO of Simec Atlantis, said: “We are proud of our team, who worked efficiently and most of all safely during a worldwide pandemic, to bring tidal stream energy to Japan. Throughout the project we have also received great support from our strategic partner, Kyuden Mirai Energy, who was supported by a consortium of local and international stakeholders.

“I would also like to recognise the work of the Scottish Government who continue to support and champion the tidal industry and maximise the benefits to Scotland. This is a huge milestone for the deployment of clean, renewable energy from tidal stream and we hope it will be the first of many tidal turbines installed in Japan”.

Paul Wheelhouse, Scotland’s Energy Minister, said: “I would like to congratulate Simec Atlantis Energy on achieving this significant milestone for the company and also for the workers at Nigg Energy Park who built the turbine which is now successfully generating clean, green electricity in Japan.

“Both the company and the team at Nigg have demonstrated the huge potential for Scotland’s marine energy and the key role it will play in decarbonising our energy both at home and – as demonstrated by this turbine’s successful deployment in Japan – across the world and I look forward to Scotland’s marine energy potential having a further shop window to the international community when delegates gather in Glasgow for COP26, later this year”.