Saturday, March 17, 2007

Lunar Energy announces 8MW project

It seems that tidal power is picking up some momentum, as Lunar Energy has announced an 8MW project in conjunction with E.On. The proposed project is planned to be deployed on the west coast of the UK and to involve 8 1MW tidal turbines.

But it's best not to get overly excited about any imminent tidal revolution. Although Lunar's project is the largest yet announced, it's important to recognise that Lunar has a number of important hurdles to jump before this project reaches fruition.

The key issues are:
Status of technology: Lunar has yet to build a full scale device, or test at any scale in the sea. These are non-trivial challenges.
Finance: It's not clear whether E.On will be funding the building of the Lunar prototype, or whether Lunar has to close a funding round before this can happen.
Competition: There's plenty out there, in the shape of Marine Current Turbines, Scottish and Southern Energy, SMD Hydrovision, Scotrenewables, Woodshed and others.

But good luck to Lunar for closing a deal with E.On, and let's hope they successfully complete the project.

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