A consortium comprising Seaplace S.L. and Magnomatics Ltd., led by Seaplace and created for ‘FTMC Turbine’ Project (Floating tension-tethered and self-steerable Marine-current Turbine).


With the ‘FTMC Turbine’ project we are developing a marine turbine specifically designed to harness the energy from tidal and ocean currents in those regions which, having relatively-high-speed water flows at depths with long distance to the seabed, cannot ensure an economic exploitation with fixed turbines. The combination of a TLP-like (Tension Leg Platform) mooring and a robust and simple floater arranged as a nozzle makes the concept feasible. Magnomatics magnetically-geared PDD® generator (Pseudo Direct Drive) ensures a robust and high efficient solution that can operate in the inherently rough immersed conditions. The design is being validated through prototype tests at CEHIPAR model basin.

This project is co-financed by the Eurostars Program, which supports projects of SMEs intensive in R&D, and is monitored by CDTI in Spain and Innovate UK in United Kingdom.

Seaplace’s Scope

The following tasks are being developed for the design of a turbine optimized for maximum performance, versatility and ease of maintenance:

  • Determination of the optimum location of the device, carrying out analyses and studies relating to environmental parameters, and considering the legislation in force in these locations. Design bases and design calculus have been determined to define the preliminary design of the platform geometry and mooring system. Furthermore, marine operation analyses have been carried out.
  • Design and optimization of the platform geometry and mooring system: hydrodynamic analyses with CFD, structural studies, naval architecture analysis, stability in marine operations and station-keeping analyses.
  • Design and selection of the unit mechanical components and outfitting. This includes corrosion protection, definition of the software needed by the power system controlling the rpm, the definition of the auxiliary services, and the mechanical design and integration of the components inside the nacelle.
  • Model tests in Towing Tank (together with Magnomatics). Tests are defined, including the necessary drawings for the manufacturing of the model and the test set up. We will also prepare the model-basin test report, which will include the results and conclusions of the tests.
  • Design validation from test data and adjustment for an optimised turbine design.

Magnomatics Scope

The following tasks are being developed for the design, manufacture and test of a scaled demonstrator version of Magnomatics PDD® (Pseudo Direct Drive) generator which will be coupled to Seaplace’s model turbine.

  • Design of the optimum magnetic gear ratio and performance of the generator to match the operating conditions of the turbine.
  • De-risking of critical components and designs to ensure robust operation and performance of the generator.
  • Procurement and build of the scaled demonstrator generator along with the power electronics and test equipment.
  • Active dynamometer testing of the scaled demonstrator generator under operation loads and representative conditions to verify the efficiency and performance.
  • Working alongside Seaplace to assemble and test the complete turbine solution, drive the generator and contribute to the final test report.
  • Design a solution for a full scale version of the PDD® generator.