Cornwall

Wave Hub cable section floated off Cornwall

The Nordica off beach
Image caption Part of the cable sank when it was being floated to land from the Nordica, off the coast of Hayle

Part of a giant cable for a £42m wave energy scheme has been successfully floated off Cornwall after a week of bad weather and technical problems.

The cable for the Wave Hub project is being floated to shore from a ship 2km (1.25 miles) offshore near Hayle.

A flotation jacket around the cable failed last week, causing it to sink. Divers have now fitted a new one.

Engineers said they hoped to begin floating the rest of the 2km cable section later on Wednesday.

Once the cable end is floated to about 200m (650ft) off Hayle Towans Beach in St Ives Bay, it will be winched up the beach at high tide and joined to a nearby electricity substation.

Then, when the tide retreats, the buoyancy aids from the cable will be removed and tests carried out.

Image caption The Wave Hub is due to undergo tests in the autumn

Afterwards, the ship Nordica will sail out about 14km (9 miles), to what will be the wave hub's final location about 16km (10 miles) offshore, laying the cable directly on to the sea bed.

The cable is longer than the required 16km because it is to be buried under the sea bed.

Once that has happened, the 12-tonne hub, which is also on board the Nordica, will be lowered on to the sea bed.

The whole process is expected to take about a week.

The hub, which will send energy from machines on the sea surface to wave power units ashore which link to the National Grid, is due to undergo a series of tests in the autumn.

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