The Tidal Power Tug is a tidal hydrokinetic turbine using a vertical yawing spar buoy with a horizontal-axis, parallel-flow rotor. The turbine will achieve stable, safe operation in all sea conditions with unprecedented cost performance gained by use of novel materials, vertical mass-buoyancy distribution, high power-to-weight ratio, efficient deployment/retrieval, adaptive controls for blade pitch and shear compensation, and advanced analytical tools for efficient operations and maintenance. These factors will result in high turbine up-time. R&D involves structural material innovation, hydrodynamic modeling, coding the adaptive controller, designing O&M analytical tools, and designing and deploying a prototype turbine in a tidal stream. The turbine will be designed for power delivery to remote and local grids. It will operate autonomously, with a remote supervisory control and data acquisition computer providing data analysis and operator input to the onboard controller. The control system will be able to prioritize maintaining the lowest cost of energy, increasing component life and maximum available energy.
Hydrokinetic energy is an abundant renewable energy source that presents unique opportunities and benefits.