There’s one off the coast of Northern Ireland. The East cost of the US is getting them. So France, with access to some of the strongest ocean currents in Europe, has determined they’ll get some too. Electricite de France (EDF) is planning to install a pilot tidal turbine system off Northwest France, and hopes to have 4 to 6 MW pumping out of 3 to 6 turbines by 2011. The system will test out the possibility of using tidal power as a profitable electricity generation option.
EDF (a company that is Europe’s biggest nuclear power producer) believes France holds 80% of Europe’s potential of generating electricity from tidal currents – equating to about 10 TW hours every year – based on its location next to some serious ocean power. So the potential of the project is pretty exciting for the country, and apparently also for EDF. But also a little futuristic. Those are some big numbers to fill, and tidal power still has a long way to go before the technology is cheap and easy.
Still, the pilot project will bring in a lot of great data. We’ll follow their progress to see what kind of turbine technology they’re planning to implement.
Via RenewableEnergyWorld, Reuters; Photo via Clearly Ambiguous