A revolutionary method of harnessing renewable energy from the oceans has proven successful, using a technique that mimics the motion of a kite to efficiently extract energy from tidal and ocean currents. The innovative technology is currently supplying electricity to the grid in the Faroe Islands, and it was created by Minesto, a Swedish company specializing in marine energy technology.
The tidal energy kite, known as Dragon 12, boasts an impressive wingspan of 12 meters and weighs 28 tons. Tethered to the sea floor in a narrow channel between the islands, the kite’s design enables it to perform repeated figure-of-eight movements, driving the flow of water to spin a turbine and generate electricity. While Minesto has not disclosed the precise amount of electricity being produced, estimates suggest that it could potentially power around 1,000 homes.
In a press statement, Dr Martin Edlund, CEO of Minesto, described the production of electricity by the MegaWatt scale powerplant as a significant milestone for the company. He stated that the technology provides powerful, cost-effective, and predictable electricity to the grid, setting the stage for renewable energy expansion in various regions around the world. The cost of tidal power generation using the Minesto system appears to be lower than that of other tidal projects and only slightly higher than offshore wind turbines. This affordability combined with ease of deployment and regularity of tidal currents may position this technology as a competitive alternative to offshore wind generation.
The future holds promising potential for this technology’s further development and implementation.