TotalEnergies joins wave power subsea project

subsea layout

ENERGY major TotalEnergies has joined the Renewables for Subsea Power (RSP) collaborative project which is currently powering subsea equipment off the east coast of Orkney, Scotland, with wave power from Mocean Energy and intelligent subsea energy storage from Verlume.   

The £2million demonstrator initiative has connected the Blue X wave energy converter – built by Edinburgh company Mocean Energy – with a Halo underwater battery storage system developed by Aberdeen intelligent energy management specialists Verlume.

The fully operational project, which is in situ off the coast of Orkney, aims to show how green technologies can be combined to provide reliable low carbon power and communications to subsea equipment, offering a cost-effective alternative to umbilical cables, which are carbon intensive with long lead times to procure and install.

TotalEnergies is a global multi-energy company, active in more than 130 countries and committed to better energy that is ever more affordable, more sustainable, more reliable and accessible to as many people as possible. 

TotalEnergies, supported by their Ocean Energy R&D team based out of Pau, France, will now join project leads Mocean Energy and Verlume, alongside industry players Baker Hughes, Serica Energy, Harbour Energy, Transmark Subsea, PTTEP and the Net Zero Technology Centre (NZTC).

Joining RSP offers TotalEnergies access to all data and results from the extended test programme, taking place at a site 5km east of the Orkney Mainland. TotalEnergies will also be able to offer input to test plans and will be provided with a feasibility assessment of the use of RSP technology at a location of their choice. 

It is anticipated that participation will support TotalEnergies’ activities both in the UK and overseas addressing the wider energy transition across their production and energy products, as it aims to become carbon net zero, together with society, by 2050.

Dave MacKinnon, TotalEnergies Technology, Data & Innovation Manager says:

“Our participation in RSP demonstrates how important it is to us to pursue new ideas and technology that will support the decarbonisation of our oil and gas production business, both here in the UK and across the world. We’re pleased to be participating and look forward to seeing the results of this collaboration.”

Ian Crossland, Commercial Director at Mocean Energy says:

“TotalEnergies is a global multi-energy company and this new investment underscores the international interest in the potential of our combined technologies. 

“TotalEnergies has a long history in Scotland and an incredible track record in offshore operations, and their experience will be extremely valuable as we begin to commercialise our Blue Star product line.”

Andy Martin, Chief Commercial Officer at Verlume added:

“Renewables for Subsea Power is capturing industry-leading project data as we demonstrate how Verlume’s Halo subsea battery storage can reliably power subsea equipment through being recharged by a wave energy device.

“It is fantastic that TotalEnergies recognises the value of this data and has come on board within RSP to share insights such as further use cases for this technology system.”

Mhairi Begg, Technology Manager at NZTC says:

“We are delighted to have TotalEnergies join the RSP project and it demonstrates the domestic and international potential of the technology, whilst marking a significant moment in the project’s success. The consortium is a prime example of how global collaboration can advance green technologies and foster technology deployment.”

The Orkney deployment is the third phase of the Renewables for Subsea Power project. In 2021, the consortium invested £1.6million into phase two of the programme – which saw the successful integration of the core technologies in an onshore test environment at Verlume’s operations facility in Aberdeen.

In 2021, Mocean Energy’s Blue X prototype underwent a programme of rigorous at-sea testing at the European Marine Energy Centre’s Scapa Flow test site in Orkney where they generated first power and gathered significant data on machine performance and operation. 

Verlume’s seabed battery energy storage system, Halo, has been specifically designed for the harsh underwater environment, reducing operational emissions and facilitating the use of renewable energy by providing a reliable, uninterrupted power supply. Halo’s fundamental basis is its intelligent energy management system, Axonn, a fully integrated system which autonomously maximises available battery capacity in real time.

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