MCT continues to attract investment

Marine Current Turbines announced today it has received investment from Siemens, as well as the Carbon Trust, High Tide and other private investors.

Following an investment round led by the Carbon Trust in 2009, the latest funding brings the total investment in Marine Current Turbines over the past two months to £8.5m. Investors in the first round included Bank Invest, the Carbon Trust, EDF Energy and High Tide.

The total funding will help Marine Current Turbines (MCT) in its plans to deploy the UK’s first commercial tidal-energy farm in UK waters in the next two years.

MCT said SeaGen, the company’s prototype commercial tidal-energy turbine, has exceeded 1,000 hours of operation in Strangford Lough, Northern Ireland. SeaGen employs twin 16m-diameter rotors to develop a rated power of 1.2MW at a current velocity of 2.4m/s.

Siemens Renewable Energy attracted €1,576m (£1,392m) in new orders in Q1 2010

René Umlauft, chief executive officer of the renewable-energy division of Siemens Energy, said: ‘With this investment in an early-stage company we’re securing access to an innovative technology in the field of renewables.

‘As one of the technology leaders in ocean power, Marine Current Turbines is a suitable partner for us to enter the promising ocean power market.’

‘This new deal represents a major vote of confidence in Britain’s marine-energy industry,’ said Tom Delay, chief executive of the Carbon Trust. ‘The UK must urgently diversify, decarbonise and secure its energy sources, and marine energy could, over time, provide up to 20 per cent of the UK’s electricity.

‘Generating electricity from the UK’s powerful wave and tidal resource not only plays a crucial role in meeting our climate-change targets but also presents a significant economic opportunity for the UK.’

The UK has the potential to generate up to 20 per cent of total electricity demand from wave and tidal energy, assuming:

  • An electricity demand of 380TWh/yr
  • Future wave and tidal devices with an average capacity factor of 40 per cent, with tidal likely to be greater than wave
  • Typical installed capacity of 2.5MW per device, which could be higher, depending on technology advances

This implies around 8,500 devices, or a total installed capacity of some 20GW, by around 2040.

Source: Carbon Trust