Scotland holds 10 percent of Europe’s wave power potential, and the nation just announced plans to tap into that resource by building the world’s largest wave farm! Once constructed, the farm will generate 40 MW of green energy – enough to power 30,000 homes each year. The project will be developed by Aquamarine Power off the coast of Lewis using 50 of the company’s devices, and it should be up and running by 2018.
Wave power is sometimes considered the lesser cousin of wind and solar power; it came to the game later than either one and even the largest wave farm may generate less power than small wind farms do. What makes wave farming so great is that it can continue to work tirelessly, unlike wind or solar farms – even when the sun is down and the wind is calm.
Scotland is the perfect location to utilize wave power. On the eastern Atlantic, its waters are full of the necessary movement to generate a steady supply of energy. Aquamarine Power’s wave device, called the Oyster, works by using a hinged flap which moves along with the motion of the waves to generate power. These devices will be placed near the shore on the northwest coast of Scotland.
images from Aquamarine Power