Confederation Marine Modellers

It's possible that you have come across the name "Schottel" before today. The company is quite well known in the marine industry for its propeller systems and has been in business since 1921 when it was founded by Josef Becker.

If you don't know the name then you may know one of their most well-known products, the Schottel Z-drive. Most often found on tugs, they combine propeller, rudder and Kort nozzle into one device, as shown in Picture 1. Peter F. demonstrated the tug he is building during this month's meeting, and you will have noticed that it is powered by model Z-drives, as shown in Picture 2.

Schottel has turned its expertise in propellers from putting energy into water flow into extracting energy from water flow, and doing so in Canadian waters. Schottel's turbines are being used by  Sustainable Marine Energy (SME), a company specialising in tidal power systems. One of their products is PLAT-1, as shown in pictures 3 to 5.

PLAT-I (PLATform for Inshore energy) is a surface-floating tidal energy power station. PLAT-I has been designed for run-of-river and inshore tidal sites typically sheltered. The system is moored with a turret configuration allowing it to weather-vane with the tide or river flow. The SCHOTTEL SIT250 turbines are mounted on Deployment Modules (SDMs) allowing them to be quickly raised above the surface for inspection and maintenance, whilst also reducing draft for transit. PLAT-I has been developed for sheltered sites around the world in places such as Asia and South America where tidal and run-of-river energy can be directly competitive with expensive, unreliable, and dirty local electricity generation methods. The first PLAT-I platform has been extensively tested in Scotland during 2017 & 2018. PLAT-I #1 was relocated and installed at Grand Passage in Nova Scotia in September 2018.

PLAT-I’s design has been developed through numerical modelling and scale model testing at the University of Edinburgh’s FloWave test tank. Its trimaran design provides low resistance and enhanced lateral and longitudinal stability. The unique swing-up turbine modules allow access to the turbines above the surface of the water, and coupled with the low mass of the SCHOTTEL turbines allows blades and nacelle to be swapped out at site. The modular design can be broken down for shipping and road transportation allowing assembly close to installation site.

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Nautical lore - Schottel power