Pelamis, the Edinburgh-based wave power company inaugurated its first 2.25 MW wave farm off the coast of Portugal in October 2008. Now it has raised $6 million to continue it’s research and development efforts as it prepares to build its next generation wave power devices.
The new funding will help Pelamis as it prepares to install four of its 750 kW “sea snake” machines at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in the Orkneys next year.
Scottish Enterprise, the Scottish Government’s business support organisation, provided around $2 million for Pelamis through its Scottish Venture Fund.
The money from the public sector co-investment fund was matched by funds provided by existing shareholders of Pelamis, including Emerald Technology Ventures, Statoilhydro Venture, BlackRock, Atmos and SPG Sustainable Performance Group.
Jack Perry, chief executive of Scottish Enterprise, said: “The market for offshore wave energy is still in the very early stages, but we know there is huge market potential for cleaner, more efficient power. As a nation, Scotland is strongly positioned to lead this market, thanks to our abundance of natural energy resources.
“We believe there is huge opportunity for companies such as Pelamis Wave Power to expand and grow in Scotland,” Mr Perry said.
The Pelamis machine, called the P-1A, is a long narrow snake-like train of segments that floats on the surface of the ocean. Facing in the direction of the oncoming waves, the segments move up and down, with the motion of the hinges between them driving turbines to generate power.
The Portguese wave farm includes three of the 750kW “sea snake” devices, installed for the Enersis energy company and Babcock & Brown, connected up to a substation at Aguçadoura.
Each of the P-1A devices can generate enough power for the needs of about 500 homes.
Enersis has stated its wish to develop a 20MW wave farm in Portugal, but in the mean time Pelamis is setting up four of its machines at EMEC on behalf of ScottishPower.