Secrets of energy generation with these efficient underwater turbines


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Inspenet, March 27, 2023

The Brazilian company Tidalwatt has developed underwater turbines that can be much more efficient than traditional wind turbines. A single turbine can generate clean energy for 22,000 homes.

According to Maurício Queiroz, founder and CEO of the Tidalwatt startup, when the energy source is predictable and constant, as is the exclusive case of the ocean, it can be said that this source guarantees energy security.

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In this way, the ocean is the only clean and safe source of energy. Ocean currents are already extensively mapped around the world, so they already know several locations for the installation of these underwater turbines.

The product is uniquely designed to capture the hydrokinetic energy associated with underwater currents. Unlike wind turbines, this technology is not based on wind or aeronautical mechanisms, which lose energy between the blades of the wind turbine, but rather continuously captures the energy generated by currents.

Queiroz explains that an underwater turbine of 3 m. in diameter, it has the capacity to generate 5 MW of power at a current of 1.87 knots, practically the same power as a 180 m diameter wind turbine. In this way, the turbine with a diameter 60 times smaller, generates the same power. In addition, due to the availability of the source, a wind turbine generates energy 90% of the time, that is, being 3,600 times smaller in coverage area, since the startup’s wind turbines can generate 3 times more energy.

The startup plans to install its turbines in locations with average current speeds greater than 1 knot, generating 5 MW with a turbine capacity ranging between 70 and 95%. Considering the average energy consumption of Brazilian homes, Queiroz says that each of these turbines can serve around 22,800 families.

The company is also focused on protecting marine life, as the installation sites have been chosen far from coral reefs to protect the surrounding ecosystems, avoiding bottom trawling on the ocean floor. In addition to the foundations of some wind turbine plants, artificial reefs will be formed to allow various marine species to live and breed safely there.

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Image: Tidalwatt

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