Belgian wave-power developer to invest £2m in full-scale Orkney sea-trials

Small-scale model of Laminaria wave energy convertor
Small-scale model of the Laminaria wave energy convertor

A Belgian wave power company is to expand its testing and development operations at the Orkney-based European Marine Energy Centre after raising some £2 million in new investment from EU-based funders.

Funding from new investors –  QBIC II and PMV and existing investor CEIP – will support Laminaria to further develop its wave energy generation technology and initiate a full-scale demonstration project in Scottish waters.

A 1-in-5 scale energy producing prototype of its wave power device was successfully tested in the North Sea in 2015.

Proving survivability in extreme storm conditions is a key focus of LAMWEC, an OCEANERA-NET funded project led by Laminaria to upscale their technology to 200kW and ready it for deployment at EMEC.

Steven Nauwelaerts, Chief Executive, of Ostend-based Laminaria, said: “After delivering proof of concept with the North Sea test campaign in 2015, demonstrating a grid connected device in the turbulent Scottish waters is the very exciting next step.”

Roald Borré, Head of PMV’s Equity Investment team, commented: “Laminaria has the potential to be a game-changer in the ocean energy field. The company has a clear technology development and product roadmap to become a provider of renewable energy products and services at a competitive cost in the long term.”

Sofie Baeten, Managing Partner of QBIC II, added: “Laminaria is a great example of a second generation technology platform that has the potential to have a vital impact on the renewable wave energy landscape. We are happy to support the Laminaria team in realising this ambition, together with a strong syndicate of investors.”

6 Sept 2017

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