Two new collaborative R&D competitions from the board are designed to support innovation that will lead to the cost effective exploitation of UK and global wave and tidal stream resources.

The first £9m call includes an investment of up to £2m from the South West Regional Development Agency (RDA), which is also developing the Wave Hub project off the coast of Cornwall. The competition opens in March and focuses on driving down the cost of energy and improving the reliability of wave and tidal stream energy devices.

It is designed to complement a second £3m call due to open in September that focuses on supporting the deployment of pre-commercial full scale wave and tidal devices installed and operating in the sea. The call will focus on monitoring the performance of wave and tidal energy devices and ensuring that they are reliable and can be installed and maintained effectively.

This is specifically aimed at businesses that are already working towards full scale deployment of their wave and/or tidal energy technology.

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, says: “Wave and tidal stream technologies are at an early stage of development and it is expected that they will be a significant part of the renewable energy mix needed in the UK by 2050…

“To fully realise the marine energy potential in the UK, there are a number of technological challenges that must still be tackled, ranging from proving which technological solutions will most successfully harness marine energy, to reducing the cost of the energy produced to make the technology competitive with other renewable energy solutions.”

Both competitions are complementary to the Carbon Trust’s Marine Renewable Proving Fund.