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  • Writer's pictureMatt Dawson

Orthotropic supports Orbital's development of next generation tidal blades

Updated: Jul 31, 2021

Huge congratulations are due to the whole team at Orbital Marine Power on the successful grid-connection of their O2-2000 tidal turbine - recently featured on the BBC. It's fantastic to see UK companies playing a leading role in the urgent drive towards #ZeroCarbon, especially given the recent run of extreme weather events across the globe.

At #OrthotropicEngineering, we're particularly pleased to have contributed to the analysis of the O2-2000 composite blades (below) during 2019 - Find out more about our involvement here .

Tidal energy blades represent a challenging application of composite materials, balancing the need for extreme strength and durability with hydrodynamic performance and low cost. The predictability of the vast tidal resource around the UK means that it is an extremely attractive source of reliable green energy for the future. It's therefore a priority to reduce the levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for the technology (currently higher than that of well established renewable technologies such as wind and solar due to the early stage nature of the industry) to ensure long term viability and to maximise the market potential for tidal energy.

To help address the issue of cost, Orthotropic has been contracted by Orbital to conduct a series of work packages in 2021, aiming to reduce the LCOE associated with their next generation of composite blades. We're drawing on our long experience of #Composites and #BladeEngineering to look at the challenge from several complimentary angles, including materials selection and testing, blade structural configuration and future-proofing; we've also sub-contracted Blackfish Engineering Design to conduct optimisation studies using their excellent proprietary software.

Please don't hesitate to contact us for assistance with the engineering of composite structures, especially for marine renewable projects. There's also an opportunity to meet us in person at the International Composites Summit in London on 8th-9th September: Look out for us on stand 24!

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