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Hyundai Heavy moving into tidal power business

Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), the world’s biggest shipbuilder, completed the site trial of a prototype 500 kW tidal current power system at Uldolmok Passage in Jeollanam-do, southwest Korea.

Prototype of 500 kW tidal current power system in Jeollanam-do, Korea. Click to enlarge.

Tidal current power is a form of hydropower that converts the kinetic energy of the tidal currents into electricity using turbines. Hyundai Heavy’s prototype tidal current power system directly connects a tidal turbine, a gearbox, and a generator for power transmission. The system can operate regardless of current direction using a specially designed turbine system.

After completing factory and basin tests last year, HHI successfully produced target power generation from site trials this May. Based on the data collected from the trials, Hyundai Heavy plans to pursue tidal current power farm projects by scaling up power generators. The Ulsan-based company is also part of the government-backed National Project for Developing MW-class Tidal Current Power Farm with other Korean companies. The project is due to be completed in 2014.



Can under (salt) water turbines, structures and cables be built to resit for 25+ years?


Sure, but I'm sure it will create lots of maintenance jobs, you want more green jobs right?.. you dont mind if your electricity is $0.50 a kwh do you?.. conserve and learn to use less electricity.


Looks basically like a barge with the struts commonly found on dredge rigs, and probably has the turbine (propeller) submerged underneath. Not the most visually appealing design but 500 KW of power, that is more stable / less variable than wind, is pretty impressive.


Another thing is that they will no doubt try to market the technology heavily in Japan, which will probably revamp its energy mix at this point and phase out nuclear power. It's just a matter of time before the workers exposed to lethal amounts of radiation begin to die off...when that happens, nuclear energy should be pretty much finished in Japan.


People at Hiroshima and Nagasaki were exposed to greater and more rapid doses than the Fukushima workers, and there were surprisingly few long-term health effects. If you're waiting for real data to support the claims of the radical anti-nukes, you're going to be waiting for a long, long time.


They did a tidal system in the Hudson River, it was enough to run a supermarket on shore for all the lights and refrigeration, so I guess you could say it was a success.


The Japanese earthquake will hasten the transition to non-radiative catalytic reactions producing excess heat. This will be the first nation to actively invest in this technology for pragmatic reasons. Japan has few alternatives outside geothermal which is wildly expensive and has difficult corrosion issues.

The massive earthquake and subsequent containment issues all set up the response with non-radiative heat.


If you have an estuary tidal system like that shown in the picture, you put down four posts and the center is a turbine like a hydro power plant...that seems straight forward enough.

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