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The unsung hero of renewable energy systems: Tidal power

The ocean can provide more than enough energy to power the whole world if we utilise it correctly. What’s more - the ocean can provide reliable and continuous energy if we harness an underused source of energy: Underwater tidal streams. At Minesto, we have the solution to make these streams work for us, and we think it’s an integral part of a future renewable energy system.
The key to the clean energy transition is making use of the energy sources that nature provides so that we don’t have to rely on fossil fuels or other limited resources for energy generation. We already know about the power of the sun and the wind to produce energy for us, but there is one source of energy that is critically underutilized: The ocean.
The ocean is an underutilized source of reliable, renewable energy. Endless underwater tidal streams can provide us with a predictable energy supply.
The ocean is an underutilized source of reliable, renewable energy. Endless underwater tidal streams can provide us with a predictable energy supply.

According to IRENA, the ocean can provide us with up to 400% of the current global energy demand, if utilised correctly. This means that even if we quadruple our energy use in the coming years, we can still power the whole world through ocean energy.
The reason that the potential is so big is that there are many different ways of harnessing ocean energy, and different technologies can tap into it in different ways. The main sources of ocean energy are tidal streams, ocean currents, tidal range (rise and fall), waves, ocean thermal energy, and salinity gradients.
At Minesto, we specialize in harnessing the power of tidal streams, and the reason for that is that they are 100% predictable, meaning that the endless underwater tidal streams create a reliable source of energy that can be planned around. Since tidal streams are determined by the gravitational pull of the earth, moon, and sun, we can predict them with incredible accuracy thanks to the reliable movements of the sun and moon. Since 2007, we have worked to develop an underwater kite that can harness the energy from tidal streams, and we now have operations in Sweden, Wales, the Faroe Islands, Northern Ireland, and Taiwan.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dkXinDn67Kw


The reliable and continuous nature of tidal streams means that we can create a renewable baseload power source that is predictable and available, covering the low points of other renewable energy sources that are weather dependent. On our We Don’t Have Time profile, we will continue to explore how our technology works and how it fits into the renewable energy system of the future, and we will also talk about it during Stockholm Climate Week. If you’re curious and can’t wait, feel free to check out our website.

  • Princess

    29 w

    Great insights. 👍

    • Johannes Luiga

      30 w

      This is really encouraging

      1
      • Marilyn Mehlmann

        61 w

        Tidal streams are - surely? - not only determined by astronomical factors? For example, as I understand it, ocean salinity plays a big role; changes in salinity balance caused by melting ice are already affecting the Gulf Stream, for instance. Once such balances are unsettled, it may be suspected that other forces come into play. While applauding all initiatives to make use of tidal power, I do find the text disturbingly dogmatic.

        2
        • Marilyn Mehlmann

          61 w

          Alarm bells go off when I read a sentence like "even if we quadruple our energy use in the coming years, we can still power the whole world through ocean energy". I can't imagine that this solution (unlike all others) uses no natural resources - or indeed energy.

          1
          • Juan Carlos Wandemberg Boschetti

            62 w

            A bit skeptical about it due to its need to move around.

            1
            • Sarah Chabane

              62 w

              Super interesting! Definitely an under studied topic! I look forward to heating about Minesto's work at Stockholm Climate Week

              3
              • Evangeline Wanjiru

                63 w

                Great read

                7
                • Ford Brodeur

                  63 w

                  This is great to read! Does the installation of your underwater kites consider the migratory patterns of aquatic animals?

                  7
                  • Sarah Chabane

                    62 w

                    @ford_brodeur_ relevant question!

                    4
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