Orbital awards blades contract for tidal turbine to A C Marine & Composites

Orbital Marine Power a developer of floating tidal stream turbines has awarded its composite blades contract for the company’s first commercial O2 tidal turbine to A C Marine & Composites.

The contract will see A C Marine & Composites build the 10m composite blades for both of the O2’s twin rotors (four blades in total) giving the machine a swept area of over 600 square meters, the largest ever on a tidal turbine.

The Orbital O2 is a 72m long floating superstructure, supporting two 1 MW turbines at either side capable of generating over 2MW from tidal stream resources. It will become the world’s most powerful tidal turbine when it enters operation in 2020 as part of a long term project at the European Marine Energy Centre, Orkney. Improvements in Orbital’s platform design have allowed for a rotor diameter increase of 4m on the company’s previous, record-breaking, 2MW SR2000 turbine, with the O2 capable of producing electricity for over 1,700 UK homes.

Orbital Marine Power based in Orkney and Edinburgh is focused on the development of a tidal energy turbine technology capable of producing a step-change reduction in the cost of energy from tidal currents. The company’s floating technology offers a low-cost solution for simplified and safe manufacture, installation, access and maintenance along with the ability to use low cost, small workboats for all offshore operations.

We are extremely proud to have been awarded this contract by Orbital Marine; becoming part of the wider UK supply chain for the O2 project. Our structured production philosophy and in-house resin infusion technology will no doubt add value to this commercial tidal stream project. This is also a great opportunity for A C Marine & Composites to work on a project that will have a positive impact on the environment, whilst reaffirming the UK’s commitment to renewables. Alex Newton, Director, A C Marine & Composites

Orbital’s contract with ACMC follows recent contract awards as part of the overall build programme for the O2; these include the O2 platform manufacturing contract to TEXO Group in Dundee and an anchors contract to FAUN Trackway in Anglesey.