Page last updated at 10:52 GMT, Monday, 17 November 2008

2010 switch-on for wave project

Artist's impression of the Hub
Wave power machines will be plugged into a "socket" on the sea bed

A ground-breaking wave energy project off the South West Coast aims to send power back to the mainland by 2010.

That is the target for engineering firm JP Kenny, which has been appointed to oversee the project.

The scheme, 10 miles off Hayle in Cornwall, will be the UK's first offshore facility for demonstrating a commercial-scale wave power plant.

Up to 30 wave-energy machines could be sending power via a "socket" or wave hub, to be placed on the seabed.

'Great step forward'

The 28m project is part financed by the government, the South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA) and the EU.

If the tests are successful it could lead to the world's largest wave energy farm.

Stephen Peacock, the SWRDA's executive director of enterprise and innovation, said: "This is a great step forward for wave hub.

"We want south-west England to lead the world in the development of marine renewable energy and we're delighted to have a company of JP Kenny's calibre on board."

JP Kenny will manage the design, procurement and installation of the wave hub and the onshore works on SWRDA's behalf, including the selection of sub-contractors.

It will spend the next few months working on the concept designs for wave hub, with detailed designs by May 2009.

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