Established in 2005, Edinburgh-based Aquamarine Power developed the Oyster wave power technology to capture energy found in near-shore waves.
The Oyster concept is an oscillating wave surge converter: a buoyant, hinged flap attached to the seabed at around ten metres depth, around half a kilometre from shore. This flap, which is almost entirely underwater, moves backwards and forwards in the near-shore waves. The movement of the flap drives two hydraulic pistons which push high pressure water onshore to drive a conventional hydroelectric turbine.
Aquamarine Power deployed and tested two full-scale Oyster devices at EMEC: the 315kW Oyster 1 and the second-generation 800kW Oyster 800, spending in excess of £3m in Orkney and working with over 40 local businesses. Oyster 800 was grid-connected in June 2012 at EMEC’s Billia Croo test site until the test programme ended in 2015, when the company ceased trading.