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Marine hydro firm OPT secures funds for PowerBuoy development

Wave energy hydropower developer Ocean Power Technologies Inc. announced that its subsidiary, Ocean Power Technologies Ltd, based in Warwick, England, has been awarded a GBP 1.5 million (US$2.3 million) grant from the South West of England Regional Development Agency for the development of its next generation PowerBuoy wave power system.

The award will further strengthen OPT's long-term involvement with Britain's southwest region, where it became the first company to commit to participate in Wave Hub, the GBP 42 million wave energy farm for which the infrastructure is now under construction by SWRDA at Hayle, Cornwall, England.

The funds will go toward the scale-up of the power output per PowerBuoy from the current level of 150kW to 500kW, wire services reported.

Recently, Ocean Power Technologies Inc. won a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy for the development of the next generation PowerBuoy ocean energy hydropower device.

With the new award, OPT will lead a project to accelerate the development of the technology for a larger version of its utility-scale PowerBuoy for expected deployment at the Wave Hub, sponsored by SWRDA. The anticipated collaboration among OPT, A&P Falmouth and the Peninsula Research Institute for Marine Renewable Energy, which is a collaboration between the Universities of Exeter and Plymouth, will contribute to the scale-up of OPT's existing PowerBuoy, as well as provide innovations to improve reliability and increase performance of the PowerBuoy.

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