Scottish renewables firm Partrac pioneers tidal turbulence project

Partrac marine energy servicesGlasgow-based Scottish renewables company Partrac has announced that its flagship Turbulence in Marine Environments project is entering the final stages of data analysis following the success of turbulence measurement surveys.

The project, developed to improve the understanding of the effect of marine turbulence on tidal arrays in Scottish waters, is being delivered in partnersip with Ocean Array Systems, ABPmer and IT Power.

It is being funded by the Scottish Government and managed by the Carbon Trust through the Marine Renewables Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) Array Technology Innovation Programme.

Comprehensive turbulence measurement surveys were undertaken by Partrac in the challenging tidal environments of both the Sound of Islay and the Inner Sound, Pentland Firth. 

The first round tidal sites were selected for their commercially viable characteristics to ensure captured survey data and guidance supports the ongoing commercial development at these two sites.

Sam Athey, Director and co-owner, Partrac Ltd, said “The successful attainment of 100% data return from these innovative surveys, has provided high quality data for assessment and classification of turbulence, leading to Guidance that will provide a framework for the tidal industry to measure, classify and analyse turbulence for commercial tidal arrays.”

The surveys were designed specifically to measure turbulence using different methods and technologies so that each can be evaluated, and turbulence can be mapped across a tidal energy development site.

Guy Henley, project manager, at the Carbon Trust, commented: “Understanding the impact of turbulence on tidal arrays is a critical aspect of realising commercial scale tidal arrays.

“The comprehensive nature of the data collected by the project team has exceeded our expectations and we are confident the guidance for the industry will help improve understanding of this important area.”

Following the analysis of the data, industry guidance is expected to be released later this year, providing a unified framework for measuring, classifying and predicting the effect of turbulence on resource assessment, device design/operation and array yield.

The project has involved interaction with the tidal industry through presentations at recent events.

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