Our story first started in 2001 when Professor Trevor
Whittaker's research and development team at Queen's University,
Belfast began to research flap-type wave power devices with a view
to reducing the cost of energy. The R&D team's research
ultimately led to the development of the Oyster wave energy
The innovative design of the Oyster wave energy
converter attracted the interest of Allan Thomson, the retired
founder of WaveGen, the UK's first ever wave power company.
Allan went on to co-fund further R&D into the Oyster wave power
device. In 2005, Allan set up Aquamarine Power to bring
Oyster wave power technology to the commercial market.
In 2007, we secured an investment of £6.3 million from major
utility SSE (Scottish and Southern Energy) plus further investment
of £1.5 million from venture capitalist Sigma Capital Group.
This gave us the financial backing and additional industry
expertise we needed to progress our Oyster wave energy technology
from scale model wave tank testing to full-scale sea trials.
In 2008 we completed the fabrication of our first full-scale
prototype Oyster wave energy converter and in 2009 we installed
Oyster 1 at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney when
it began producing power to the grid for the first time.
The following year, in November 2010, we welcomed ABB, one of
the world's largest power and automation companies, as a major
shareholder in the business.
In 2011 we installed our next-generation Oyster 800 wave energy
device at EMEC. This device is undergoing operational testing and
is producing electrical power.
Oyster 800 has now demonstrated at EMEC for over three years -
including surviving some of the largest stroms this decade. Our
team of engineers and researchers are already developing the next
versions of our Oyster devices, while our commercial team is
progressing with a portfolio of development sites where can install
and operate future Oyster wave farms.