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SME Unveils PLAT-I "Game Changer" Inshore TIdal Energy Platform

October 16th, 2017

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Sustainable Marine Energy (SME) has presented the design of its new floating tidal energy platform, the PLAT-I, which will shortly be making its way out to the Philippines for real-sea deployment.

The PLAT-I floating tidal energy platform is designed for more sheltered and slightly more benign sites in terms of wave climate – corresponding to the I in the platform’s name which stands for Inshore. Such sites are in abundance in Southeast Asia, the target market for PLAT-I.

The trimaran design for the platform, which hosts four SCHOTTEL HYDRO SIT250 turbines, was designed to provide low resistance and enhanced stability.

The 280kW PLAT-I is 32 meters long, with a beam of 27 meters. The platform’s modular design can be broken down for shipping and assembled close to site, the shallow draft configuration also permits launch and tow out with limited port infrastructure.

The platform is integrated with mooring turret which enables alignment with flow in any direction, while turbines have been configured for maximum power extraction in shallow water channels. Swing up turbine deployment modules allow maintenance access at the surface.

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The platform is set for deployment in the Philippines, but first, it will be trialed in Connel Sound in Scotland later this year. It was was manufactured in Peterhead by JBS Group Scotland Ltd with the support from the Scottish Enterprise and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.

Jason Hayman, Managing Director of SME, said: “The future is very promising for tidal energy. It’s something which can make a significant impact and contribution to our energy mix. It’s going to take time, and it’s not going to be a straightforward path, but hopefully, we’ll be delivering large scale utility projects just like offshore wind is today.”