OpenHydro Wins Contract for Tidal Project in Puget Sound
Irish tidal energy company OpenHydro secured a major contract to develop a tidal energy pilot project for a public utility provider in Washington.
A contract to develop a tidal energy pilot project for a public utility provider in Washington State has been won by the Irish company OpenHydro. While little detail of the contract has been made public, it was confirmed that the contract with Snohomish County Public Utility District (PUD) is to develop a tidal energy project in the Admiralty Inlet region of the Puget Sound.
The pilot project, which has received a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Water Power Projects, involves the installation of up to three tidal turbines in the Puget Sound, which will be connected to the electricity grid via subsea cables. OpenHydro will install the turbines using its purpose-built installation barge, the OpenHydro Installer. Installation is expected to begin as early as 2011.
The company's vision is to develop arrays of tidal turbines, silently and invisibly generating renewable energy under the world's oceans. This particular project will make a considerable contribution towards meeting PUD’s renewable energy targets. The clean, emission-free energy source can be easily integrated into the region's existing electrical system without requiring hundreds of miles of new high power transmission lines.