Scottish tidal energy developer Nova Innovation has secured an extension of its seabed lease at the Shetland Tidal Array, increasing the capacity of the site lease from 0.5MW to 2MW.
The extension of the existing seabed lease at Bluemull Sound in Shetland will also see the current lease period stretched until 2041, the company informed.
The lease extension provides opportunities for further deployment of turbines as part of a larger array and creates the prospect of a longer-term operation in Shetland, according to Nova Innovation.
Nova Innovation’s grid-connected Shetland Tidal Array features three tidal turbines with the total capacity of 300kW.
The next phase involves the installation of additional three turbines by 2020, under the EnFAIT project – a flagship European tidal energy technology initiative led by Nova, in a consortium of nine leading industrial, academic and research organizations from across Europe.
Patrick Ross-Smith, Shetland Manager for Nova Innovation, said: “We see this as a big vote of confidence from Crown Estate Scotland for tidal energy. This lease extension paves the way for expanding the array, using the next generation of Nova turbines: further driving down the costs of this clean and predictable source of renewable energy.”
Mark McKean, Development Manager for Crown Estate Scotland, added: “With their ongoing work to further enhance the technology to be utilized at the Shetland site, Nova is demonstrating that tidal energy projects are truly coming of age. During the last 12 months we have witnessed a significant upturn in tidal energy deployments within Scottish waters and Nova’s existing operations at Bluemull Sound have added to that.”
To remind, the EnFAIT project has been supported by almost €15 million through European Commission’s Horizon 2020 program.