The developer behind the proposed Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon has started the race for a £22m turbine manufacturing plant in Swansea.
Tidal Lagoon Power is looking for a contractor to build the factory that it says will be the “beating heart” of the tidal lagoon turbine industry in the UK.
The 100 m-long turbine factory will be located between Kings and Queens Dock at Swansea Bay and will supply the Swansea Bay plant, as well as the proposed lagoons in Cardiff and Newport.
The factory will receive turbine components from suppliers for pre-assembly of the 7.2 m-diameter turbines required for the projects.
The £1.3bn Swansea project is the first project for the UK’s tidal energy market, with the larger £8bn Cardiff Bay Tidal Lagoon the next plant in the pipeline.
Work on the Swansea Bay project was initially scheduled to start in spring 2016 but was delayed after the government and Tidal Lagoon were unable to agree a strike price.
A report is currently being carried out by former energy minister Charles Hendry looking into the cost effectiveness of future UK tidal projects.
The news of the tender comes alongside a report from Tidal Lagoon Power that estimates the tidal energy market could be worth £70bn to UK industry.