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Maintenance

Many marine schemes fail because they are impractical or uneconomic to maintain. In the Triton scheme, ease of maintenance has been one of the key drivers for the whole design concept.

While in its operating position, access can be gained to the electrics and control rooms at the top of the spar buoys - see opposite.    

Access 1
Access 2
Access 4

For more major maintenance or repair, Triton can be brought to the surface by blowing the ballast water. Still connected to the seabed, Triton is in effect a tethered catamaran with considerable stability as a platform for access and effective work.

Access can be gained to the 1100 tonne twin hull body  from a service vessel, see above right. Once 'on board', maintenance staff can gain access to the electrics and control rooms (see image below) and each turbine nacelle via hatchways and cross arms. Access to the seabed hinge is by hoisting up the tether arm in reversal of the initial deployment routine.

T6 maint access

Fouling

One task that will be inevitable is to de-foul rotor blades to ensure  performance does not degrade too far. Colonisation of surfaces by  macroalgae, diatoms, and hydroids will take place and will reduce the hydrodynamic efficiency of the rotor surfaces. It will also lead to large encrustations of operating mechanisms, access panels and mooring  systems. If not left too long, these growths can be removed by high pressure washing once or twice a year with the turbines brought to the  surface as shown above. 

A device installed at RaceRocks by Pearson College in Vancouver suffered significant fouling after about 6 months deployment. For example, the picture on the right shows fouling of blades. 

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TRITON Tidal Energy Platform Technolog y