A major new European tidal energy project is to use artificial intelligence (AI) to improve turbine performance and accelerate the commercialisation of the power source.
Called ELEMENT, it is being led by Scotland-based Nova Innovation and aims to slash the lifetime cost of energy by 17%.
The €5 million (£4.4m) project, which will start next month, will incorporate AI technology from the wind energy industry into tidal turbines, delivering an adaptive control system that improves performance.
Nova Innovation says AI technology has successfully been deployed in the wind sector to deliver significant commercial benefits by allowing turbines to adapt continually to changing conditions.
Simon Forrest, CEO of Nova Innovation said: “Reliable tidal energy generation is now a reality. It is no longer a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when’ the technology becomes mainstream. The sector has taken great strides forward in recent years and our drive is now to reduce cost to compete with conventional generation.
“Fortunately for our industry, many cost reduction techniques have already been demonstrated in established renewable technologies, such as offshore wind. By capturing this knowledge, we can reduce the costs of tidal energy more quickly by piggybacking on their technological advances.”
The project won a contract from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.
Other organisations that are part of the consortium include IDETA, Chantier Bretagne Sud, Innosea, Wood, Nortek AS, University of Strathclyde, DNV GL UK, France Energies Marines, Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult and ABB UK.
Technologies for energy users that can help them reduce costs and emissions, including AI, will be among those on display at The Energy Solutions Show (TESS) on June 5th at Millennium Point, Birmingham.