Successful launch for pioneering tidal turbine

The world’s most powerful tidal turbine has begun its journey to Orkney.

Orbital Marine Power Ltd's 2MW device, the Orbital O2, could generate enough clean, predictable electricity to meet the demand of around 2,000 UK homes and offset approximately 2,200 tonnes of CO2 production per year.

The tidal turbine, which is 74m long and weighs 680-tonnes, was launched from the Port of Dundee earlier today (22 April).

The operation saw the device transferred from the quayside into the River Tay using a submersible barge. The O2 will now be towed to Orkney to undergo commissioning before being connected to the European Marine Energy Centre's test site at Warness, where it will become the world’s most powerful operational tidal turbine.

Construction work on the O2 turbine started in the second half of 2019 and the build has helped support more than 80 jobs in the UK economy. The launch of the O2 also marks the first vessel launch from Dundee since ship building in the city ended over forty years ago.

The Orbital technology has been under continuous engineering development, including rigorous testing of scaled systems in both tank conditions and open ocean environments, since the company was founded in 2002. Orbital currently employs 32 staff based in offices in Orkney and Edinburgh.

Find out more via the official Orbital Marine Power Ltd website. Read all about Orkney's renewable energy expertise in our energy section. Newsletter

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