This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

April 02, 2003

European Wave and Tidal Energy Projects Face Setbacks

Two European projects to demonstrate wave and tidal energy production—one in Denmark and one in Norway—have recently encountered setbacks and delays.

In Denmark, a wave energy system called the Wave Dragon was damaged during its deployment in late March, when high winds caused the installation team to stop work, apparently before the mooring system was fully installed. The ensuing storm caused damage to the prototype, but it remains afloat. See the press release from Wave Dragon ApS.

The Wave Dragon is an offshore floating device that captures ocean waves in an elevated reservoir, then converts that reservoir's stored energy into electricity by running the water through a hydroelectric turbine as it is returned to the ocean. See the Wave Dragon Web site.

In Norway, a tidal energy test program has been "considerably extended" for reasons that were not disclosed by the developer, Hammerfest Strom AS. The company originally planned to install its prototype, which resembles a wind turbine, in a narrow strait in Kvalsundet in northern Norway. Although the prototype has been built, its installation in the strait has been delayed indefinitely. See the Hammerfest Strom Web site.

Britain is also supporting wave and tidal energy projects. In January, the United Kingdom's Energy Minister, Brian Wilson, awarded 3.7 million pounds (nearly 6 million U.S. dollars) to two companies: Wavegen and Tidal Hydraulic Generators Ltd. See the press release from the U.K. Department of Trade and Industry.