Lockheed to partner Atlantis

US military industrial giant Lockheed Martin has joined forces with Atlantis Resources to bring its 1.5MW turbine system to market, with an eye on deliveries to Scotland's 400MW MeyGen tidal project.

The global partnership deal, which builds on several earlier collaborative projects between the two companies, includes provision for Lockheed Martin to invest further in “tidal energy technology and joint projects through design, component development and systems integration services”.

“This is an important day in the history of Atlantis. Having worked with Lockheed Martin on numerous projects in the past, they will now provide their engineering and design services for our new AR1500 turbine and will be our global systems integration partner going forward,” says Atlantis chief executive Tim Cornelius.

“The fact that Lockheed Martin has chosen to team with Atlantis as our global design and system integration partner will allow us to further enhance our technology, project pipeline and the capabilities of our team.”

For the past two years, Atlantis and Lockheed Martin have been jointly working on a flagship AR1500 for installation at the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (Force) in Canada’s Bay of Fundy. Atlantis received a C$5m ($4.84m) grant for the project from the Sustainable Development Technologies Canada fund in February and is working towards deployment in 2015.

“Leveraging the experience and knowledge gained from the development and testing of our previous turbine systems over the past five years, Lockheed Martin will now work to complete the detailed design of our AR1500 system, which we will seek to deploy and test at the Force facility in early 2015,” says Cornelius.

The two companies are also working together under the UK Energy Technologies Institute’s TEC Demonstrator programme, which aims to slash the cost of deploying tidal turbines via commercial arrays such as the MeyGen project in the Pentland Firth, which received final planning consent from regulator Marine Scotland this month.

“Tidal energy is a very large, almost untapped, resource available on a global scale,” says Lockheed Martin ocean-energy programmes director Tim Fuhr. “Through this partnership, Lockheed Martin and Atlantis will bring the technology and skills to leverage the power of the ocean and provide access to affordable and secure renewable energy.”