Jobs on the horizon after the success of the Shetland tidal power project
A Scottish tidal energy specialist has secured Scottish government backing for his offer to develop a pioneering turbine manufacturing plant that could help Scotland become a leader in the field.
Nova Innovation has won £ 2million in funding for a project it says will develop Europe’s first assembly line for mass production of tidal turbines.
The award comes as energy giant SSE prepares to increase its investments in Scotland by tripling the production capacity of a wind farm in the Highlands.
Perth-based SSE said plans to add up to 20 wind turbines at the Achany Wind Farm in Sutherland would make a significant contribution to the green energy movement in Scotland and boost the local economy.
It hinted at the prospect that the expansion of the Achany wind farm would create local jobs and opportunities for local businesses to win contracts.
Projects planned by Nova Innovation and SSE will be closely monitored in Scotland as investments in renewable energy installations have yet to kick-start the broader supply chain and jobs across the board. ‘expected scale.
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SSE has come under fire for awarding manufacturing contracts related to the £ 3bn Seagreen wind farm it is developing off the coast of Scotland to companies based outside Scotland.
However, SSE boss Alistair Phillips-Davies insisted the group has worked hard to ensure Scottish companies get a fair share of the work on their projects.
SSE made a bid for more offshore licenses in the famous ScotWind, which closed applications last month after garnering strong interest from a range of companies, including oil and gas giants.
Crown Estate Scotland asked ScotWind applicants to show how they plan to help develop the supply chain in the country.
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Nova Innovation expects the support provided by the Scottish Government to help the company play a significant role in the sector as it moves through the development phase.
The funding will support a project to develop a facility suitable for mass production of turbines and work on related shipping and deployment technologies.
Nova is investigating potential sites in Scotland. If the company opens a manufacturing plant, it expects to double the number of employees over the next three years, to 70, from the current 35.
Nova Managing Director Simon Forrest said the Scottish Government’s support was important and very welcome as the company and the sector at large “move to an industrial basis”. He added, “This is an endorsement of Nova’s global ambition to transform the power of our seas into clean, predictable energy, empowering coastal communities around the world. ”
Nova said the costs of tidal power are falling rapidly as the sector expands. The size of the global tidal power market by 2050 could reach £ 126 billion.
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Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero in the Scottish Government, said Scotland is ideally placed to tap into the huge global marine energy market. He believes that the Nova project marks an important step in the commercialization of the sector.
Nova developed what she describes as the world’s first offshore tidal network in Shetlands in 2016, with turbines installed on the seabed. The bay has supplied homes and businesses for over five years.
The company won a contract in 2019 to supply 15 turbines for use in Canada.
Success in the tidal turbine industry could provide Scotland with some compensation for the disappointments suffered by wave energy companies over the past decade. Pelamis and Aquamarine Power entered administration after developing technology that looked promising.
SSE Renewables’ Achany Wind Farm has 19 turbines, which generate 38 megawatts, and is located approximately five kilometers north of the village of Rosehall in Sutherland. The proposed extension will include up to 20 turbines and is expected to generate more than 80 MW. – enough to power around 72,000 homes.
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The company said: “The operational Achany wind farm has been a huge success, providing 38 MW of renewable energy… and contributing hundreds of thousands of pounds to local organizations through our community investment fund.
He said the turbines he planned to install in the extension of the wind farm would measure 149.9 meters at the height of the tip, meaning there would be no need for visible aviation lights. .