Underwater kite generates sustainable power

Underwater kite generates sustainable power

Technology News |
By Wisse Hettinga

SeaQurrent, a startup located in the north of the Netherlands, is developing a completely new approach for harvesting energy from the sea.

The patented multi-wing TidalKite can generate clean electricity from shallow (and deep) low velocity tidal and ocean currents with an efficiency rate resulting in a breakthrough of the price of electricity produced from tidal energy.

The TidalKite itself is a single rigid, buoyancy-neutral and hydrodynamic device, consisting of a frame with multiple wings placed in tandem. The kite wings capture the water flow, accelerating the kite through the water. 

The system uses a kite connected by a tether cable to a power take off (PTO). The PTO is fixed to the seabed by a mooring structure and electricity is distributed to shore by an underwater electric export cable.

The kite creates a huge lift force that is transferred via the tether to the power take-off. The power take-off comprises a hydraulic cylinder and a hydro motor-generator combination. The hydraulic cylinder is extracted by the traction force of the kite and the pressurised liquid is expanded over the hydro motor-generator combination, where clean electricity is generated.

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