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From left, Gary Gray, Julia Gillard and Carnegie chief executive Dr Michael Ottaviano. Picture: Lincoln Baker/The West Australian.
From left, Gary Gray, Julia Gillard and Carnegie chief executive Dr Michael Ottaviano. Picture: Lincoln Baker/The West Australian.

UPDATE 2.20pm: Carnegie Wave Energy has struck a deal with the Department of Defence to supply power from its Perth wave energy project to the HMAS Stirling naval base on Garden Island.

The agreement covers the exclusive purchase of all the electricity generated from the project and connection into the base’s electrical infrastructure.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Brand MHR Gary Gray visited Carnegie’s North Fremantle research facility this morning to announce the deal.

Carnegie’s managing director and chief executive Dr Michael Ottaviano said it was significant for the Royal Australian Navy to be supporting the development of emerging clean technologies like the company’s CETO technology through the purchase of electricity.

Carnegie said it had been working with the Department of Defence on the agreement since the signing of a memorandum of understanding in December 2008.

“Since then Carnegie has successfully demonstrated its technology through a demonstration project in the ocean off Garden Island.

At the same time, Carnegie has developed the project’s design and secured 50 per cent government funding.

Construction and first power to the grid is expected by the end of next year.

Carnegie is still seeking various approvals and permits required to construct and operate the project.

The company’s CETO technology uses an array of fully submerged buoys tethered to seabed pump units. The buoys move in harmony with the motion of passing waves, driving the pumps which in turn pressurise water that is delivered ashore via a pipeline.

On shore, high-pressure water is used to drive hydroelectric turbines, generating zero-emission electricity. The high-pressure water can also be used to supply a reverse osmosis desalination plant, replacing greenhouse gas emitting electrically driven pumps usually required for such plants.

Carnegie shares closed up 0.11 cents, or 28.95 per cent, to 4.9 cents after emerging from a trading halt.