Wave energy to power salmon farm near Isle of Muck

A salmon farm is set to benefit from a groundbreaking new wave energy project. Picture: Stephen Mansfield
A salmon farm is set to benefit from a groundbreaking new wave energy project. Picture: Stephen Mansfield
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A groundbreaking new project on an island off the west coast of Scotland will see wave energy being used to power a salmon farm.

Marine Harvest Scotland has applied for permission to site a prototype device to its new site near the Isle of Muck.

Chris Read, Marine Harvest’s environmental manager, said: “This is a very exciting development with huge potential. Our environment in Scotland makes us a natural home for both salmon farming and wave energy and this could prove to be a winning combination.”

Wave power is still in its infancy but devices such as this could offer a solution for producing electricity at remote sites far removed from the grid.

Known as the WaveNET, the device will be held in place by 160m mooring legs which will sit within the existing mooring footprint.

The generator consists of six individual modules, known as SQUIDs, each able to produce 7.5KW, giving a total of 45KW installed capacity.

The device is a prototype which has been developed by AlbaTERN.

The site near Muck is one of the planned open sea farm sites, originally unveiled in 2010, which form part of Marine Harvest’s £80m investment programme.

The siting of the device has been made possible because the farms are in a more open location with a stronger wave regime than the original sea farms which were closer to shore.

Marine Harvest (Scotland) Ltd is the largest salmon farming company in Scotland producing over 40,000 tonnes in 2012

The company has four hatcheries, four freshwater loch sites and 36 sea farms situated in the Western Isles, Skye, Wester Ross and Lochaber.

Live fish are harvested at Mallaig and processed at the Blar Mhor processing plant in Fort William. In total 506 employees are employed at these locations.

Marine Harvest was the first company in Scotland to farm Atlantic salmon producing the first fish in 1971.

Marine Harvest holds the Royal Warrant for the supply of fresh farmed salmon to Her Majesty the Queen.