THE Scottish firm that expects to build the world’s most powerful floating tidal turbine has received a vote of confidence from a Swedish engineering giant.

Orbital Marine Power has signed what it described as a landmark contract with SKF covering the supply of key systems for inclusion in its generator.

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The company said the contract brings the industrial capabilities of SKK in behind its technology and will provide the firm with access to the resources of one of the biggest equipment manufacturers of its kind in Europe.

“We see tremendous potential for floating tidal technology due to its low installation and operating costs,” said Michael Baumann of SKF’s marine and ocean energy division.

Orbital’s progress will be monitored closely in Scotland amid hopes the country could become a leading player in the marine renewables sector.

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Backed by Scottish entrepreneur Matt McGrath, the company has said its 75 metre Orbital O2 2MW turbine could unlock tidal markets around the world. It reckons its floating turbine simplifies installation and maintenance as underwater operations can be avoided.

Orbital was awarded £3.4 million official funding in August, when it became the first beneficiary of the Scottish Government’s £10m Saltire Tidal Energy Challenge Fund.