DesignPro Advances SEENEOH Trials Through BlueGift Support

Irish company DesignPro Renewables said it has achieved new performance milestones with its hydrokinetic turbine as part of ongoing testing at the SEENEOH test site in Bordeaux, France.

The turbine generates energy from flowing water and has been deployed at a dedicated test site on the River Garonne since September 2018.

The design, build and initial deployment was supported through funding from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme which enabled the device to be tested for a full 12 months.

In September 2019, the 25Kw unit was due to be removed and decommissioned as the H2020 support had ended, however the new funding and support through the BlueGift programme has allowed the device to stay on trial for a further 12 months.

According to DesignPro, this additional testing period has enabled the company to implement upgrades and improvements to the unit, including a new Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) system developed in conjunction with Mitsubishi Electric Ireland.

The system is said to have delivered significantly improved performance results just 2 weeks ago on site and marked a milestone for the team.

The BlueGift support is specifically aimed at testing the longer-term performance of the device, looking at elements such as wear and tear, replacement parts and operations and maintenance requirements as well as overall survivability of the unit.

Vincent Mc Cormack, innovation manager at DesignPro, said: “When you have put so much work, time and resources into developing and building a full-scale turbine it makes sense that you get as much value and learnings from it as possible. This support under BlueGift has allowed us to keep the device in for an additional 12 months at SEENEOH, granting us the opportunity to test the device more rigorously thereby getting us one step closer to having a market-ready product and instilling more confidence for investment and partners.”

Vincent Laroque, president of SEENEOH, said: “We are delighted with the renewed confidence of DesignPro Renewables to extend its trials. Europe, via the INTERREG Atlantic Area programme, is offering a tool that is particularly suited to this sector by providing financial support to test sites so that they can open their doors under advantageous conditions for technology developers.”

To remind, DesignPro also completed the deployment and testing of its 60kW (DPR60) turbine at Kirkwall in the Orkney Islands, Scotland in conjunction with Leask Marine.

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