September 25th, 2015 by Tocardo International BV
The realisation of electricity generation from tidal energy has taken another big step forward with the installation of five Tocardo tidal turbines to generate renewable energy in the Eastern Scheldt (Oosterschelde) storm surge barrier, in Zeeland in the Netherlands.
This installation is the largest tidal energy project in the Netherlands as well as the world’s largest commercial tidal installation of five turbines in an array.
The five Tocardo Tidal Turbines are suspended from a steel structure designed and built by Huisman.
The Tidal Power Plant was engineered and produced in only nine months, and the 50 metre long and 20 metre wide tidal power plant structure was successfully installed in under two hours between the pillars under the Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier.
The Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier is the largest of the world-renowned Delta Works series of dams and storm surge barriers, designed to protect the Netherlands from flooding from the North Sea.
The barrier will now generate hydroelectric power as well as provide a defence against storm surges.
Hans van Breugel, Tocardo International BV CEO, said “this project marks an important step in the development of tidal energy. Tidal technology is innovative and could grow into a significant Dutch export.”
The export expectation of tidal energy electricity generation is more than 200 Gigawatts.
“With our turbines in the Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier, we can now show the world what tidal energy can provide a clean and reliable source of energy that could meet 10 to 20% of the world’s electricity demand,” Hans van Breugel said.
Joop Roodenburg, Huisman’s Chief technology officer, said the advantages of tidal energy are evident.
“Tidal energy electricity production is predictable, and the turbines are installed in water so they will not be visible like wind turbines,” he said.
“We will focus in the future on upscaling the installations, which requires a large investment. Only then we can build an important export industry,” Mr Roodenburg said.
“Huisman has been willing to support the project financially because the company believes in the future of tidal energy and because of the great opportunity for exports.”
Strukton was involved in the project planning and was responsible for project management during the tidal turbine installation.
Mammoet transported and installed the tidal power plant at the Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier.
The Netherlands’ Department of Waterways and Public Works (Rijkswaterstaat), which managers the Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier, supports this innovative initiative to generate energy. The organisation facilitates initiatives to test or build renewable energy installations.
The province of Zeeland provided a significant financial contribution to the project.
Zeeland politician Ben de Reu said “tidal energy is a good match for us. In recent years we have built up much expertise in this area and now we can show that the water is an important energy source for Zeeland.”
“I am convinced that tidal energy is the future,” he said.