Race Rocks


Pearson College staff and students have acted as long-time volunteer wardens at Race Rocks and were influential in having the area protected as an Ecological Reserve in 1980. As the environmental steward of Race Rocks, the College is dedicated to protecting the marine ecosystems within the reserve and to increasing the awareness of students, visitors and the public about marine systems, ecological reserves and environmental issues. By transforming a decommissioned light station into a dynamic educational and research centre, Pearson College has been able to share the rich cultural and environmental history of Race Rocks with Canadians and the world. Race Rocks serves as an award-winning showcase of sustainable and innovative educational initiatives and emerging technologies. www.racerocks.com

Installation of Tidal Turbine Generator at Race Rocks
The Clean Current tidal turbine generator (TTG) was installed in about 20 metres of water near Race Rocks during the period July to September 2006. The hydraulic and electrical performance of the TTG were tested using an offline load bank for 2 months. After testing was completed on December 5, 2006, the TTG was connected to the control system that feeds electricity into the battery storage system at Race Rocks. Photos shown below document the final assembly and installation to the TTG.

Final Assembly

The Clean Current Service Vessel, Lena Marie – manufactured in Vancouver BC

Drilling and Post Installation

Laying Sub Sea Cable

Deployment of Tidal Turbine Generator

Update: June 2007

Clean Current’s testing at Race Rocks has validated its performance claims for the direct drive permanent magnet generator and the flow enhancement duct design. The tidal turbine generator has successfully extracted power in flows up 6.6 knots. The Company is disappointed with the performance of the water lubricated bearing system.

The tidal turbine generator was successfully extracted on May 24, 2007. The unit is being carefully inspected and will be refitted with a new bearing system. The same bearing system will be designed into the commercial scale unit. The retrofit will also include an improved augmenter duct design and an improved fouling release coating. All of the lessons learned at Race Rocks will be incorporated into the commercial scale design.

Update: October 2008

Clean Current successfully redeployed the turbine at Race Rocks in October and has begun testing the improvements. Tests have been completed with tidal currents exceeding 7 knots (3.5 m/s). The improvements to the turbine include a new bearing system, replacement of all generator connectors, improved augmenter duct, and new fouling release coating. The fouling release coating will require time to validate. All other improvements have been tested and are meeting expectations.

Clean Current turbine is launched from Arrow Marine facility for voyage to Race Rocks.

The service vessel, Lena Marie, is anchored over deployment site at Race Rocks.

Clean Current turbine is lowered onto post where divers wait to attach the unit and its cable connections

Clean Current turbine is inspected by divers from Pearson College

Major Technical Contributions to the Project by:
AMEC Americas Limited

AMEC Dynamic Structures Ltd.

Powertech Labs Inc.

XANTREX Technology Inc.

OceanWorks International

Robert Allan Ltd.

Triton Consultants Ltd.