Pentland Firth/Inner SoundThe MeyGen project is located in the Inner Sound of the Pentland Firth, the body of water that separates the north Scottish mainland from Stroma Island.
Approximately five years ago, an initial site selection process was conducted on the whole of the Pentland Firth using a tidal flow model which was created in order to highlight areas of suitable resource for tidal stream energy projects. Further site evaluation was carried out to map constraints to development of the MeyGen project and within the Pentland Firth, including:
- Technical (accessibility, bathymetry and grid connection)
- Environmental (species and habitats)
- Other sea users (navigation, fisheries and recreation)
The Inner Sound was assessed as the best site for initial commercial development. The Inner Sound has an excellent tidal resource, with maximum current speeds of up to 5 metres per second. The site has good access to the grid, and suitable water depth.
The area has a number of environmental considerations that are explained in the Environment section of this website. MeyGen treats this aspect of the project as a priority and consultation on all identified areas of research will continue throughout the development process and indeed, during operation should the project obtain consent.
The majority of the seabed in the Inner Sound is comprised of scoured bedrock exhibiting a ‘saw tooth’ profile. Rocks that form the seabed consist of folded and tilted sedimentary sandstone, flagstone and siltstone. There are sediment depositions where the current eddies around Stroma to the east and west; however, these are not within the lease area. A detailed hydrographic survey of the area has been carried out, processed images of which are available here.