Ocean Renewable Power Co. is leading a €3.2 million (roughly $3.4 million) research project in Ireland that will allow it to further develop the tidal energy technology it first began testing a few years ago in Maine’s Cobscook Bay.
ORPC Ireland, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Portland-based company, is technical lead on the project, which is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Programme.
The research project’s goal is to improve system reliability for ORPC’s full-scale hydrokinetic turbine by developing a more robust solution to transfer power from the turbine to the electrical grid, according to the company. Lab testing will take place at the University College Cork’s Lir National Ocean Test Facility.
When ORPC deployed its tidal energy turbine in Cobscook Bay in 2012 it became the first company in the country to deliver power to the electrical grid from an ocean energy project—whether tidal, wave, or offshore wind.
The Ireland R&D project “will make our marine renewable energy systems more competitive with other renewable energy options,” Chris Sauer, ORPC’s president, said in a statement. “We look forward to working with our dedicated partners in the EU to significantly advance ocean energy technologies and help secure Europe’s global competitiveness.”