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Alternative Energy Production - Tidal / Wave etc.


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#1 mgb2010

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 10:41 AM

(** MOD EDIT ** This thread is now a merged topic of posts from the Windfarm thread with the previously titled "Shetland's Green Energy Future" by greenheatman to the above to better reflect the differing technologies.)

Interesting to see in the current issue of Professional Engineering magazine (a publication from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers) three tidal power generators are being installed off the coast of Alderney. These are "mounted on the seabed 40m down and 3km offshore. No part of the structure will be visible from the surface and they will be deep enough not to interfere with shipping traffic".
The picture in the article shows a neat looking installation and are currently rated at 250kw each and states that "similar turbines could be scaled up to produce between 1MW-3MW output". The development, once complete, will be around 3GW comprising "hundreds of turbines".

Looks like there are other viable options out there (and from UK companies) that could produce the energy without impacting upon our landscape.
Has anyone undertaken a review of all the options available to Shetland? If so, where can we have a look at the report?

#2 Marooned in Maywick

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 11:16 AM

I'm no energy engineer, but surely tidal power is something that could and should be investigated here?
There must be plenty of suitable sites - Yell Sound, Mousa Sound.....I'm off to investigate what tidal power generation needs.

#3 Marooned in Maywick

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 11:42 AM

Correction to the above - not tidal barrages, but more of a marine turbine type of affair.

http://www.marinetur...m/technical.htm

#4 BigMouth

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 04:10 PM

Correction to the above - not tidal barrages, but more of a marine turbine type of affair.

http://www.marinetur...m/technical.htm


We should be doing that. There are no shortage of tides around our shores.

#5 Selkie

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 08:26 AM

Correction to the above - not tidal barrages, but more of a marine turbine type of affair.

http://www.marinetur...m/technical.htm


I would far rather see this type of development than the windfarm.

#6 islandhopper

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 10:00 AM

Here you find some info about the open-centre turbine they are still testing at the EMEC site in Eday Sound / Orkney although the company OpenHydro has just recently signed two commercial contracts for tidal turbine developments with Alderney Renewables and Nova Scotia Power.

http://www.emec.org....w.asp?newsID=25
A link to the OpenHydro website with more details is at the bottom of the EMEC site.

Note: The turbine in Orkney has been installed between a twin monopile structure enabling the unit to be raised and lowered for demonstration. This structure will allow OpenHydro to test future generations of the OCT at minimal cost. Turbines in energy generating "farms" will be placed directly on the seabed - with no installations above sealevel.

#7 Caeser

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 11:02 AM

The issue with tidal power is that it still requires an interconnnector. The cost of which and most importantly the crown Estate seabed lease costs are unknown.

Sadly it will be far more expensive to have tidal generators in Shetland waters as opposed to say the Pentland Firth etc where the tides are greater, and transmission costs lower.

Viking energy I fear is not wholly thought out. Why Shetland Aerogenerators Ltd are given a 10% share is beyond me, why can they not extend their own farm, or develop the proposed farm at Cunningsburgh instead?

Can I have a 10% share too please, Mr Ratter?

I suspect all is not clear on that front - is that a rat I smell or have I burnt the tea!

Far better I would have thought to have several smaller well thought out privately owned renewable businesses spread through the Isles, than a huge sprawling SIC enterprise. Private enterprise will always be a better solution.

To me the only way we will be able to expand renewables in this perfect location is to be able to harness and contain the produced power rather than export it through a half billion pound cable. If we had £500 million research budget instead, I am sure someone would come up with a solution, and our Islands would be completely powered from stored energy.

In addition, there would not be nuclear generated kilowatt in sight when the winds are not blowing and we are importing electricity back up the same interconnector!

Who will need a diesel power station in Lerwick now? I am sure it can be closed down! 50 jobs gained in the Lang Kames and 50 jobs lost in the power station. Sounds like employment decentralisation not job creation

Whoops was that another Viking Energy secret!

#8 Sudden Stop

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 06:57 PM

Correction to the above - not tidal barrages, but more of a marine turbine type of affair.

http://www.marinetur...m/technical.htm


I would far rather see this type of development than the windfarm.


Won't this kill fish, erode the sea bed whilst disrupting with a major shetland industry (fishing) and cost a fortune??? :D

No, but seriously, it looks pretty good. Problem is that there's no reason why these couldn't be installed else besides Shetland, without the cost of the an interconnecter. A Shetland based windfarm will, however, be far more effiecient than on the mainland and therefore worth the investment.

Once we get ourselves a cable from the windfarm to the mainland we could expand into all these other energy production methods.

#9 islandhopper

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 12:33 AM

Once we get ourselves a cable from the windfarm to the mainland we could expand into all these other energy production methods.

See it from the other side ;-):
More or less profitable industries (wind) will get less public funding due to the shortage of available public money from Scottish Executive, Westminster or the EU while investments into the "future" might get the money.

Under the financially actual worsening conditions you have to redefine "investment" as "research" to get the money you want. The oil and nuclear businesses used these mechanisms for decades but curiously the wind business is obviously and after some positive effects in the initial stage not trusting in this lessons. ;-) They are still argueing we want the public investment into infrastructure at first and before we decide whether or not the wind based technology is outdated when the infrastructure is built.

We should be happy to see that not all the chaps in Brussels or elsewhere are idiots ... ;-)

#10 Marooned in Maywick

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 06:19 AM

Correction to the above - not tidal barrages, but more of a marine turbine type of affair.

http://www.marinetur...m/technical.htm


I would far rather see this type of development than the windfarm.


Won't this kill fish, erode the sea bed whilst disrupting with a major shetland industry (fishing) and cost a fortune??? :D

No, but seriously, it looks pretty good. Problem is that there's no reason why these couldn't be installed else besides Shetland, without the cost of the an interconnecter. A Shetland based windfarm will, however, be far more effiecient than on the mainland and therefore worth the investment.

Once we get ourselves a cable from the windfarm to the mainland we could expand into all these other energy production methods.


Kill fish? Nah, I can envisage way into the future when fish have evolved into more intelligent creatures and they're saying "Right lads, here's some of these twirly things - we're safe here :D " <-- fish smiley
Erode the sea bed? Nah, we'd be putting bloody big lumps of concrete on it to support the twirly things.
Disrupt a major industry? Nah,plenty more fish in the sea - they'd just have to go for the thick ones.
Cost a fortune? Probably.

Not sure where I stand on the interconnector idea - good if it's gonna mean jobs and ££ for Shetland but at the expense of the environment.....hmmmm, needs more thought.

I still think this is worth investigating - i.e. how many would we need, where could they go, what would be the environmental/economic implications etc.

#11 Marooned in Maywick

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Posted 30 March 2007 - 08:13 AM

This is getting more like what I had in mind This kinda thing .

Hopefully someone will have at least investigated the possibility of this for wis?

#12 crofter

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Posted 31 March 2007 - 10:51 PM

Hmm, yet to be convinced by the wavepower machines, or rather that they won't be smashed to pieces sooner rather than later. Winter storm waves around Shetland potentially could supply more power than we are ever going to need, but they are also very destructive. Plus, waves are a result of wind, which is not reliable (even if it is twice as reliable in Shetland than elsewhere!) Tidal is the best prospect IMO.

#13 BigMouth

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Posted 31 March 2007 - 10:54 PM

:oops: I meant tidal :oops:

Two distinctly different technologies.

#14 crofter

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Posted 31 March 2007 - 11:06 PM

This is getting more like what I had in mind This kinda thing .

Hopefully someone will have at least investigated the possibility of this for wis?


The inventor of Gentec did a Shetland roadshow either last year or perhaps 2005. He struck me as a typical "nutty professor" type guy, but that is not to say that his machines and calculations are no good. He had a long running exchange of letters with David Thomson which is likely still archived on the "Shetland News" site. That ended abruptly when DT produced the figures for Burradale which proved what a windy place Shetland was, although there was a letter from Andrew Mackay recently offering to make Shetland the richest community in the world from Gentec...
http://www.shetland-...alternative.htm

#15 Jonners

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 11:50 AM

Like many people I would prefer the tidal method but the general concensus among people in the know is that it's not ready.

It comes down to a question of trust. Why should we trust this guy when the rest of the renewable energy community says renewable tidal energy technology still needs to come on.

I guess there's no harm in investigating more fully Andrew Mackay's claims. But I can't help but feel slightly prejudiced against him when he makes his plea for the SIC to pay for his boat-fare to Shetland! It doesn't inspire confidence in Mr Mackay - do you have a penny to your name, sir? - and it's almost as if he's trying to take advantage of the SIC's infamous carelessness when it comes to handing out cash to all and sundry.

I think Andrew Mackay should prove to the people of Shetland his scheme works first, get private backing to set it up and if it does then get round the table with the powers that be. That's what the windmill people have done.

#16 BigMouth

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 12:17 PM

The ferry ticket sounds like a flippant remark to me. I am sure that we have fully expensed the travel of every other consultant who we have had the "benefit" of in the past.

His 50:50 share on micro generation installs must be making him very wealthy indeed. I am sure that he can easily afford the ferry ticket.

#17 crofter

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 03:14 PM

I think Andrew Mackay should prove to the people of Shetland his scheme works first, get private backing to set it up and if it does then get round the table with the powers that be. That's what the windmill people have done.


Is Shetland Aerogenerators not bankrolled by the development trust?

#18 Jonners

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Posted 01 April 2007 - 04:44 PM

The ferry ticket sounds like a flippant remark to me. I am sure that we have fully expensed the travel of every other consultant who we have had the "benefit" of in the past.

His 50:50 share on micro generation installs must be making him very wealthy indeed. I am sure that he can easily afford the ferry ticket.


I know it was a flippant remark, and I don't think it makes him sound very professional.

I also don't really see that he has much - if any - sort of track record. I certainly don't see evidence of him ever doing much commercial work. But perhaps I haven't been looking in the right places. Maybe he's a genius but I'd want a bit more to go on first.

Is Shetland Aerogenerators not bankrolled by the development trust?


I don't know but I'm supposing it is. I've no problem with this. The Dev Trust is supposed to back projects like this, it's shown some foresight and should therefore be given credit. I think Burradale has been a success. But then wind power has a proven track record - tidal power, unfortunately, has not got a proven track record yet. Far brainier people than me who actually know about renewable technology aren't yet backing tidal power - I defer to their superior knowledge. Perhaps some of the millions Shetland makes from wind power could be ploughed back into a renewable energy research company that pioneers new renewable technology?

#19 greenheatman

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 02:48 PM

Firstly, may I just say that I could pay to Shetland out of my petty cash box, but there is a principle at stake. Let me remind you that my letter in the SN recently suggesting that SIC or some OTHER party should pay my fare was not a flippant remark - it was deadly serious.

Secondly, you are all being conned by the wind farm lobby when it comes to capacity factors. The oft averred to figure of 53% for Shetland refers to the theoretical mechanical power developed on the main low speed shaft and as such bears no relation to the electrical output of a wind turbine. If this was a court of law you would be expected to corroborate this 'hearsay evidence' by providing wind velocity stats for Shetland.

You will be amazed to learn that a 2MW wind turbine does not generate 2MW of electricity, but it may develop 2MW of mechanical power on the main shaft when the wind is blowing at gale force. It may, in fact, generate 1.8MW(elect) gross in these conditions, but by the time the 'works power' is subtracted this falls to about 1.6MW(nett).

Further, when the wind falls to 12m/s or below the mini-400kW generator cuts in and it, in turn will generate at about 360kW(e) gross but by the time the 'works power is subtracted you would be lucky to 100kW(e) out.

The sad thing is that gale force winds are not that common, even is Shetland, so a 2MW rated wind turbine delivers under 200kW for most of the year.

So, dear forum members, you are content to believe and TRUST the lying dogs who represent the wind turbine industry, but you do not trust me and want proof that my system works as advertised.

Well, you are a bit late, because another island community will be first to benefit from GENTEC venturi and it these people that will grow very wealthy - Shetland has had its chance and for the price of a lousy boat ticket worth under a £1000 you will be able to buy a few hundred beers into which you can weep at what might have been

#20 greenheatman

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 08:27 PM

"However, I would suggest that if the invention is as good as you say it is, you would probably be wise to try and sell it to lots of people, rather than just one island. I'm no businessman but I'd say that would be the way to go."


This island has several million people living on it.

One thing I have noticed is that people tend to assume things, erroneously, 9 times out of 10. I was not going to SELL my technology to Shetland I was going to give it away - for the greater good of the planet.

It is never a good idea to look a gift horse in the mouth.

Another thing that people assume is that wind turbines will be the only technology in the world that will never be superseded and will spend £millions building more soon to be obsolete wind turbines.

A little-known person named Charles H. Duell could be called one of the main ancestors of the AmbiEntity. He was Commissioner of the US Patent Office at the turn of the last century. In 1899 he implored US President William McKinley to abolish the Patent Office and stop handing out patents to inventors, because, as Duell reasoned brilliantly: Everything that can be invented already has been invented."

It good to see that this attitude is still alive and well on this forum.

In years to come when I am proven correct, one of the last great wildernesses will be gone for ever - all because nobody bothered to check out the claims made by wind turbine manufactures - on the basis that they would not lie about their inneffective and poorly engineered contraptions would they?

Yes, your Mickey Mouse windmill probable does produce something for 50% of the year but it does not generate at full capacity for much more than 15% does it? Your evidence please?