The use of a kite-inspired technology to harness renewable energy from the oceans has proven successful, with a method that efficiently extracts energy from tidal and ocean currents. This innovative approach is currently supplying electricity to the grid in the Faroe Islands, thanks to a power generator created by Minesto, a Swedish company specializing in marine energy technology. The Dragon 12 tidal energy kite boasts a substantial wingspan of 12 meters and weighs 28 tons, making it an impressive feat of engineering. 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.
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 the 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 innovative approach to harnessing renewable energy from oceans. Further development and implementation will be worth monitoring as this technology continues to pave its way towards becoming a game changer in renewable energy generation worldwide.