New York’s tides of transition

As a tidal energy startup, the Verdant Power Company constructs a half-scale generator situatedĀ in the East River tidal strait; New York may shortly benefitĀ from an infusion of tidal energy into its system. We are investigating what this implies for the region’s energy mix and whether it could support other coastal cities as a case study. Tidal energy operates by turning the action of the tides into electricity in regions with a significant tidal radius. However, considering the relative predictive ability of tides, this processing power method is still very much in infancy.

As part of the firm’s 5th generation tidal turbine programme in October 2020, Verdant Power, which is an energy startup based in New York, made headway, deploying 3 tidal power turbine generators situated in the East River tidal strait of the city. Verdant’s technology rollout also marked the first approved tidal power venture in the United States. In addition to the New York-based venture equity capital investment, Verdant has also raised $6m in financing for the plant and funding from the United States Department of Energy as well as the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. With Verdant’s Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy (RITE) initiative projected to affect the Big Apple’s clean energy ambitions significantly, New York City has become closer than ever to having the tidal power incorporated into the municipal grid.

Trey Taylor, who is the chief marketing officer and the co-founder of Verdant Power, asserts: “Considering the depth as well as tidal current speed of the 2.25 m/s of the East River, fifth-generation system or the “commercial standard system” of the firm was adapted to this location utilizing 5-meter diameter rotors with the 35 kW nameplate generators, 3 to a TriFrame or even 105 kW.   The TriFrame has provided an average of 1MWh every day or adequate energy for 500 Manhattan flats since installation on the 22nd of October.

The RITE project presentation included three Gen5 generators shipped to a service region for the marine vessel installation from the firm’s New Jersey marine engineering support service center. In readiness for on-water distribution and implementation at the RITE work site, they were integrated onto the TriFrame plate. This presentation is a significant step down the way to global commercialization and sustainable market practices. The pre-commercial demo seeks to refine the construction and maintenance economies over the machine’s twenty-year life and show its effective performance.