Scotrenewables Tidal Power has completed deployment of its advanced modular anchoring system at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC), in Orkney, Scotland, in preparation for the installation of its SR2000 2-MW floating tidal turbine—the largest such turbine in the world.

The deployment was the last step of a novel anchoring project, the aim of which was to develop a low-cost mooring system for floating tidal energy converters that could be readily installed and decommissioned using low-cost vessels.

Scotmarine's MV Orcadia II was used for all of the modular anchor deployments. Image credit: Scotrenewables.Scotmarine's MV Orcadia II was used for all of the modular anchor deployments. Image credit: Scotrenewables. According to Scotrenewables, the philosophy behind both its turbine and anchors technology was to engineer out expensive, highly specialized vessels in preference for inexpensive work boats for all major aspects of installation, maintenance and decommissioning. The engineering challenge has been to maintain this design approach as the company’s technology and anchoring requirements increased in scale.

To achieve this, the company and partners McLaughlin & Harvey and Scotmarine developed an installation methodology in which locally cast, modular interlocking anchor blocks could be transported to the quayside and placed on the sea bed, where they would be picked up for deployment onsite using custom remotely operated lifting equipment mounted on work boats. The pre-cast fiber-reinforced concrete anchor modules were manufactured at a casting yard specifically set up within the harbor complex, transported to the quayside at Hatston, Orkney and placed on the sea bed adjacent to the quayside using local heavy lifting engineers Heddle Construction.

From there, anchor modules, each in excess of 64 metric tons, were transported to the EMEC tidal test site 30 km away by Scotmarine’s MV Orcadia II work boat. The process was refined such that multiple modules could be safely deployed in a single working day.

The SR2000 is expected to be connected onsite in the coming months.

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