Humber tidal energy firm goes into administration
THE company behind a pioneering tidal device which has been providing electricity to The Deep's Business Centre has gone into liquidation.
Neptune Renewable Energy was established in 2005 to develop tidal stream power generation using a new, niche concept and approach.
It was hoped the company could further develop the project, with a view to rolling it out commercially.
However, following extensive testing, the directors of the company say they have accepted "there is no commercial value in pursuing the project any further".
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Chairman Nigel Petrie paid tribute for the support Neptune had received after setting up a base in the region.
He said: "Since establishing a base in Hull, the company has been met with the utmost courtesy and has been supported and helped to the fullest possible extent by a range of organisations, both public and private.
"The directors are most grateful for this and regret the fact the company cannot continue further with the project."
The full-scale demonstrator – known as Neptune Proteus – was deployed in the Humber estuary in January of last year, close to The Deep.
The plan was to supply the attraction with around a third of its power and the company confirmed some power had been supplied to The Deep, "but intermittently between modifications to the device".
Neptune, which has been funded almost entirely by private investors, originally intended to deploy an array of devices in the Humber over the next two years that would have supplied power to large industrial customers.
It was then hoped the technology could be rolled out to other suitable sites around the UK.
However, directors at Neptune said they became aware towards the end of last year the device "would not be able to achieve a high enough level of electrical output, despite indications to the contrary resulting from earlier work done at fortieth and tenth scale".
In a statement issued yesterday, the company said: "Since November, a significant amount of work has been carried out, some independently, to establish the reasons for the technical problems and to understand whether the company was facing issues of adjustment and tuning, rather than a challenge to the overall concept of using a vertical axis turbine within a duct, in estuarine locations.
"The directors have been obliged to accept the chosen approach is technically flawed and, therefore, not suitable for the development of commercial arrays.
"They have accepted that there is no commercial value in pursuing the project any further.
"They have, therefore, been obliged to consult an insolvency practitioner and to place the company into liquidation."