ARENA has granted $280,000 under its Advancing Renewables Program to WorleyParsons, who has formed a partnership with EcoFin Solutions, SCHOTTEL and Civmec, to study and develop a frontend engineering design for a tidal turbine reef (TTR) device concept. The premise of this scope was to create a fixed (in location) tidal turbine energy device that has a reduced installation and maintenance cost when compared to conventional designs.
The study created an initial design for a generic tidal site so its viability could be assessed in terms of technical feasibility, project risk and key financial drivers, with the findings incorporated into a second design cycle. The second design cycle tailored the concept for a candidate site in Australia. The resulting TTR device comprises a reinforced concrete foundation base with four steel columns that support a single row of eight turbines on a tractable support structure. The TTR is proposed to be installed about 200 m off the coast in Pearl Pass in water 13 m deep (relative to lowest astronomical tide, or ‘LAT’), eliminating the need for subsea cabling and minimising the complexity and requirements of aerial cabling.