Page last updated at 11:34 GMT, Wednesday, 29 April 2009 12:34 UK

Firm quits wave energy scheme

Wave Hub Project
Wave Hub said the the 2011 start date would not change after E.On's decision

Energy company E.On has pulled out of a wave energy project off the north Cornish coast.

The company was one of four developers looking at using a 'socket', or Wave Hub, which would collect energy from other marine power projects.

E.On said it wanted to test a new Pelamis wave energy machine before committing to Wave Hub.

Wave Hub said it was already talking to other wave energy firms about taking up the spare place.

It said E.On's decision would not delay the start in 2011.

'Excellent project'

Dave Rogers, regional director of renewables for E.On, said testing of the Pelamis machine would take place at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney.

He said: "Our aim is to concentrate on testing our Pelamis device, which means that it was unlikely we'd be in a position to connect to Wave Hub in the short term.

It's... understandable that E.On wants to test a single next generation device at the European Marine Energy Centre
Nick Harington, South West Regional Development Agency

"We still believe Wave Hub is an excellent project - and we may well return to it in the future."

The £28m Wave Hub scheme will be the UK's first offshore facility for demonstrating a commercial-scale wave power plant.

It works by acting as a giant socket on the seabed which marine power projects would effectively 'plug' into to transfer the energy their schemes produce.

If the project, at a site 10 miles off Hayle, is successful it could lead to the world's largest wave energy farm.

Nick Harrington, head of marine energy at the South West Regional Development Agency, which is developing Wave Hub, said: "It's entirely understandable that E.On wants to test a single next generation device at the European Marine Energy Centre rather than an array of devices which is what wave hub is designed for.

"We wish them well and hope to welcome them back in the near future."



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