Where We Come from
Founded by Edward Cooper, this is a company that aims to innovate the Hydropower industry with its design and produce green electricity, across the globe.
As a young Navigation officer on Tate & Lyle’s ‘Sugar Boats’ in the late 1970’s I had undertaken voyages from Narvik, Norway to Glasgow bringing in iron ore pellets to feed Ravenscraig steel furnaces. During these voyages, I passed through the Pentland Firth and experienced the phenomenal tidal flow rates that occur there. Our ship would take considerably longer to traverse if we travelled against the tide.
At that moment I realised that there was very considerable scope for the ‘extraction’ of clean and predictable energy from these very fast flowing tidal streams. Today we see these waters populated with variable pitch propeller devices either vessel mounted or anchored on the seabed.
Unfortunately around the UK and indeed across the world, there are very few places where such tidal flow rates occur. The intrinsic characteristics of a propeller make this device unsuitable for the vast majority of tidal flow regions where flow rates are typically less than 2.0m/s.
A UK government study concluded that of 90GWh of available tidal power resources in UK waters an estimated 30GWh should be harvestable. It is not clear how this figure will be achieved with any propeller derived device.
Our design ‘The Edwards Turbine’ can extract energy from all flow rates available above 1 m/s economically. The design is robust and scalable and presents few issues to wildlife. The key to making tidal energy an economic proposition is that the installed cost per MWh needs to be drastically reduced from the near £600/MWh that is prevalent today. ‘The Edwards Turbine’ through its simplicity, ease of maintenance and expected long life cycle will significantly reduce Whole of Life Costs.