Posted July 16, 2020
With a 16M EUR investment plan, wave energy developer CorPower is establishing a R&D, Manufacturing & Service Centre for Wave Energy Converters in Viana do Castelo, northern Portugal.
The location has been chosen to support CorPower’s flagship demonstration project HiWave-5, and for the long-term development of supply and service capacity for commercial wave energy farms. Several factors have contributed to choosing Viana do Castelo for this investment, and are not just limited to Portugal’s undeniably powerful Atlantic swells.
A strong competence pool of engineers from adjacent sectors such as offshore wind, composite manufacturing and shipyards, top level universities and industrial infrastructure including ports and grid connection allows effective upscaling of operations in the region.
Portugal also presents an ideal environment for HiWave-5 due to its natural assets and environmental consciousness. CorPower’s work strongly complements the Portuguese Industrial Strategy for Ocean Renewable Energies, designed to create a competitive and innovative industrial export cluster for ocean renewable energy.
Grid operator REN recently installed a new offshore cable servicing floating wind, and there is significant commercial interest from utilities and project developers for next generation wave project development.
“This is a crucial stage in our pursuit to develop a new class of high efficiency Wave Energy Converters," says Patrik Möller, CEO of CorPower Ocean. “CorPower’s goal is to successfully introduce certified and warrantied WEC products to the market by 2024, making wave energy a bankable technology that can attract mainstream renewable project finance.
CorPower and port authority APDL - Administração dos Portos do Douro, Leixões and Viana do Castelo - have reached an agreement to develop the ocean energy facility within the commercial port of Viana do Castelo. It will provide space for the fabrication, assembly and servicing of commercial scale wave energy converters.
Mr Möller added that CorPower will also be contributing to the local blue tech cluster and maritime related value chains. “The arrival of CorPower Ocean Portugal Lda provides a foundation to ramp up exports and attract inward investment to the region,” he said. “Around 15 highly qualified engineering jobs are planned for the next three years, covering composite design and manufacturing, mechanical, electrical, control and marine operations.”
By Jake Frith