In October 2020, Verdant Power of New York installed three tidal power turbines with its new TriFrame mount at its Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy site in New York’s East River. With support from WPTO, NREL, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), Verdant is scheduled to test throughout 2021. The project aims to demonstrate a streamlined installation and maintenance approach as well as long-term system reliability that will help inform future deployments for Verdant and others in the marine renewable energy industry.

Verdant’s mounting system, a single triangular frame mount that holds three fifth-generation Free Flow System turbines, was designed to simplify deployment and retrieval during installation and maintenance. The mount allows all three turbines to be deployed and retrieved at once, which reduces the timeline and costs of installation and maintenance. Verdant’s Free Flow System turbine is a three-bladed, horizontal-axis unit that rotates underwater to convert the hydrokinetic energy of fast-moving water currents into electrical and mechanical energy. While the company’s latest test for the TriFrame is estimated to provide 100 kW of power to the grid, future projections show a potential power output of 1,050 kW if deployed at full scale—enough to provide power to 1,000 New York homes. Verdant designed the mount as well as the turbines to be modular and scalable.

Because of the strong water currents that change direction between flood and ebb tides about four times each day, the East River is an ideal site for tidal power generation. Since 2002, Verdant has tested multiple generations of turbines at the site for varying amounts of time. In 2012, the Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy project became the first tidal turbine project to receive a FERC hydrokinetic pilot project license. This license was developed by FERC specifically for marine renewable energy technologies that integrate with the grid. The license was issued in January 2012 for a period of 10 years, and in 2014 Verdant installed the world’s first array of grid-connected tidal turbines in the East River.

Verdant’s Free Flow System turbines positioned on the TriFrame mount.
Verdant’s Free Flow System turbines positioned on the TriFrame mount.
Courtesy of Verdant Power

Also, as part of the 2020 test at Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy, Verdant is working with the European Marine Energy Centre to conduct an off-site power performance assessment using international technical specifications. This will be the first time the European Marine Energy Centre has carried out an off-site performance assessment, and the first report issued through the IEC System for Certification to standards relating to equipment for use in marine renewable energy applications.

For additional information, contact Trey Taylor.

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