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Island town files draft pilot license for 5-MW Muskeget tidal

The town of Edgartown, Mass., has filed a draft pilot license application for the 5-MW Muskeget Channel Tidal Energy project to help power the town, located on Martha's Vineyard Island.

Edgartown currently holds a preliminary permit (No. 13015) to study the project, located in Muskeget Channel between Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket Island, in Edgartown's municipal waters. The application was submitted Jan. 31 to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, utilizing FERC guidelines for developing pilot hydrokinetic projects.

Consultant Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. filed the application on behalf of the town, noting the project is being developed in cooperation with the Marine Renewable Energy Center (MREC) of the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth.

The project is to include 14 tidal energy turbines located 25 feet below the surface of Muskeget Channel. Thirteen of the units are to be for commercial operation totaling 5 MW, while the 14th is to serve as a test stand for MREC to test various tidal energy technologies.

The application proposes utilizing a helical turbine with a design provided by Ocean Renewable Power Co. However, the application said the future technology and developer would be selected through a public bidding process.

Turbine units are to be 91 feet long, 56 feet tall, and 14 feet wide. They are to be linked by a submarine cable to a substation to be built on Martha's Vineyard.

Edgartown proposes phased development of the project over the eight-year term of a pilot license.

For more FERC news, click here.

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