Independent certification body DNV GL has awarded Tocardo’s bi-directional open rotor T2 tidal energy converter with a Statement of Feasibility.
Tocardo is a technology developer, based in the Netherlands, offering concepts such as the patented bi-blade bearing system, which allows efficient operation in ebb and flood tides. However, new concepts can present investors and insurers with a perception of high risk. To counter this, Tocardo decided to partner with DNV GL.
Five T2 tidal turbines, which are an earlier version of the T2s, have already been deployed in the Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier, in The Netherlands, and have shown very promising operational success. The impressive results have led Tocardo to announce that five upgraded T2s, 250kW rated turbines, will be installed in the Minas Passage in Canada’s Bay of Fundy in late 2017. The T2 turbines will also undergo further testing at the Perpetuus Tidal Test Centre (PTEC), Isle of Wright, UK and the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, UK.
Tocardo have been following the DNV GL certification process outlined in the established service specification for the certification of tidal turbines and arrays DNVGL-ST-0163. Issuing a Statement of Feasibility to Tocardo concludes the first stage of the certification process. DNV GL will continue to support Tocardo as it aims to achieve Type Certification for its T2s turbine in early 2017 and meet their ambitious project targets.
The work undertaken as part of the Statement of Feasibility was based upon a review of Tocardo’s design documentation and drawings, workshops with the design team, as well as visits to Tocardo’s facilities where the T2s turbines are assembled. The next steps on the path to obtaining full Type Certification will be a detailed design review, manufacturing survey and quality inspections and device testing.
Hans van Breugel, CEO of Tocardo, said: “We are ready to further commercialise our technology with our certified turbines and to show the world what tidal energy is all about - providing a clean and reliable source of energy that could fulfil some the world’s electricity needs.”
He continued: “Another important step in this professionalisation is the collaboration with Profin Sustainable Energy Solutions, one of the leading insurance brokers and advisors of several offshore windfarms in the North Sea and different renewable energy projects in western Europe.
Over the years, Profin has built a large project portfolio - and the experience that comes with it will benefit us well. We trust this will be the start of a long and fruitful relationship.”
Benson Waldron, Head of Section, Renewables Certification, DNV GL – Energy, commented: “We have been impressed with Tocardo’s focus and ability to quickly bring projects from the drawing board to reality. We are working closely with them to ensure that as they grow, they meet the requirements outlined in DNV GL’s Tidal Turbine Standard (DNVGL-ST-0164) and that they achieve their aim of tackling some of the main commercial, as well as technical obstacles, by building confidence with investors and insurers.”
Tidal energy is a new industry and certification helps to demonstrate the performance, reliability and commercial viability of technological advances which push the boundaries of current technical and engineering knowledge. Mitigating risks is particularly valuable for offshore wind, wave and tidal projects in securing project finance and demonstrating machinery operational application.