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Cape Sharp Tidal turbines preparing for deployment

Posted on: May 19, 2016

In Nova Scotia, we’re lucky to have one of Earth’s greatest renewable energy resources in our own backyard.

Cape Sharp Tidal partners Emera and OpenHydro, are a green energy leader and an innovative technology are collaborating to solve some of the most pressing challenges of a changing climate—the pursuit of a greener megawatt.

Cape Sharp Tidal
Photo credit: Darren Pittman/Images East

And we’re about to write a new chapter in our tidal energy story. The first week of June, the first of our two turbines is scheduled to depart from the Pictou Shipyard manufacturing site on the Scotia Tide barge. After a two-week journey around the province, we plan to install it at the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (FORCE) test site near Parrsboro. The first deployment opportunity window is June 24 to 27, then again every two weeks when slack tides present calm enough waters (ideally with no fog or wind) to lower the turbine to the sea floor.

Safety first

Later this summer, we’ll deploy the second turbine—and once connected to the Nova Scotia power grid, the complete array will be the largest capacity grid-connected in-stream tidal array in the world. We have a busy summer ahead, with complex marine operations in challenging conditions. We’ll be working with all our partners to communicate our plans so we can share the water with others safely. And while we are aiming for those tidal windows to deploy, safety will come first—always.

BigLift4
Photo credit: Darren Pittman/Images East

In pursuit of a greener megawatt

There’s a lot more we need to understand about harnessing the mighty Bay of Fundy. We also have a lot to learn about the marine ecosystem of the Minas Passage and have consulted the fishing and Aboriginal communities in the area. As part of our provincial and regulatory approvals process, and in collaboration with FORCE, we’ve developed an Environmental Effects and Monitoring Program . Using innovations in monitoring instrumentation and techniques, the resulting data will be used to better understand how marine life interacts with the turbines, and help inform future decisions about how our tidal energy resources will be developed. We are confident we can harness the energy of the tides, while protecting the important ecosystem of the Bay of Fundy.

Exciting days ahead

There are exciting days ahead in this ground-breaking project. And with the success we anticipate this summer, Cape Sharp Tidal is poised to be a global leader in this developing ocean energy industry.

You can look forward to more updates on milestone moments between now and grid-connection, when we can say that Nova Scotia’s energy mix includes clean, silent, predictable in-stream tidal energy. If you’d like to hear more about the about the technology, the innovation, the partnerships and the possibilities of tidal energy, follow us on Twitter @CapeSharpTidal.

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