Simec Atlantis said its MeyGen tidal power scheme in Pentland Firth, Scotland, exported over 13.8GWh in 2019, generating some £3.9m in revenue.
The Gupta-owned firm hopes to develop up to 80MW of capacity at the site and last year floated plans to power a data centre at Caithness, using a power purchase agreement via private wire to help finance its plans in the absence of subsidy support.
The firm thinks the data centre could be in place by 2024 and is in advanced discussions with potential partners having scoped out the work. It is also looking into connecting to the Celtic Norse subsea fibre optic cable currently in development as well as other fibre networks.
Atlantis CEO Tim Cornelius said performance data from the array’s operations to date will help inform other projects around the world, such as proposed arrays off the west coast of France.
Meanwhile, he said the nascent tidal sector is starting to benefit in cost reductions driven by “sustained pressure” in the offshore wind supply chain.
Of the data centre scheme, Cornelius suggested that the world’s most valuable resource “is no longer oil but data”.
“By combining tidal power with stranded onshore wind farms in close proximity to MeyGen, we can create a virtual power plant to provide sustainable power to a data centre in Scotland, creating important new fibre connections for Scotland and the UK in the process.”