Our approach to tidal stream power generation differs from that adopted by many competitors, who have settled around the "underwater windmill" horizontal axis design. We have chosen a different approach because the tidal environment differs in some important ways from wind.

 

  • because there is a limited depth, the size of a vertically oriented rotor is constrained, which limits the power that a horizontal axis device can generate - in the image above, where the water is 45m deep, Pulse generates a similar power to the wind turbine - 5MW, where-as the single rotor horizontal axis device is limited to 1.5MW, and the dual rotor to 3MW.
  • because most tidal currents move back and forth along almost a straight line, there is no need for the device to rotate to face the flow
  • because the water surface is often very rough, and occasionally contains boats and floating debris, turbine blades need to be kept away from the surface

 

Our machine is designed for this environment; The blades are horizontal rather than vertical, so the length is not limited by water depth - allowing much higher power; the non-rotating base is shaped to increase the tidal flow through the machine; and our design is fully submerged and allows for the blades to be folded down onto the base into a "survival position" to avoid rough weather or floating objects.

Finally, recognising the high cost of installation and maintenance, we have designed an installation and recovery method which does not require expensive vessels. You can find out more about our technology advantages in the following pages.

In 2009, Pulse Tidal deployed the 100kW "Pulse-Stream 100" into the mouth of the River Humber in the UK. We chose this location because...

The Pulse Tidal approach uses oscillating hydrofoils, which lie horizontally in the water and sweep up and down. This means that the length of...

Our device can generate four times the power of competing "horizontal axis" machines in any given water depth. Another way of looking at this...

The Pulse Stream machine is buoyant, which allows it to be fully assembled and commissioned onshore before floating out for installation. It can then...