Atlantis Resources Corporation is committed to keeping the marine energy sector abreast of progress in replacing the blades on its AK1000™ tidal turbine. This follows the failure of the experimental composite blades at the EMEC test facility in Orkney in August, owing to a manufacturing fault.
Following a tender process, a contract to manufacture standard GRP blades for the AK1000™ test turbine has been awarded to Norco GRP Ltd, a specialist in glass-reinforced plastic based in Poole, Dorset. The design and manufacturing process used for the new blades is being reviewed by Det Norske Veritas, who will also be involved in the manufacturing quality assessment prior to delivery.
Upon delivery of the new blades in early 2011, Atlantis will re-install the turbine at the first opportunity and resume its commissioning and testing programme at EMEC.
Norco joins a UK-dominated supply chain for the AK1000™ turbine, alongside Soil Marine Dynamics, Isleburn, Tata Steel (Corus), Wichita and Hallin Marine.
Investigations have confirmed that the fault with the original blades related to the composite material used during their fabrication and that the faulty composite parted from the blade structure, which remained fully intact. The turbine nacelle was successfully retrieved in November and is ready for redeployment once the replacement blades are installed.