Last month marked the first American system to produce electricity via tidal energy. On September 13th, Bangor Hydro Electric Company received power from Ocean Renewable Power Company’s (ORPC’s) Cobscook Bay Tidal Energy Project.
According to the press release from ORPC, “This is the first power from any ocean energy project including offshore wind, wave and tidal, to be delivered to an electric utility grid in the United States, and it is the only ocean energy project, other than one using a dam, that delivers power to a utility grid anywhere in North, Central and South America.”
Although small in scale, the project has a capacity of 180 kilowatts, which is roughly the equivalent to the power consumed by 25-30 homes, this system has the capacity for expansion. In the fall of 2013, two more generators will be installed to triple the project’s electricity production.
In addition to the tidal installation, the 8 year-old privately held company is also involved in river and deep-water ocean current power generation systems and projects.