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An innovative anchor technology that was recognised at the Seawork Innovation Showcase back in 2017 is now seeking funding to help take it to market.

Wednesday, 9th June 2021

It is well known that Inventors of brilliant ideas generally do not benefit from their invention usually due to lack of funding enabling them to progress the invention to market.

The Tidal Anchor® is an omnidirectional marine anchor which has been developed to solve the problem affecting conventional anchors which need to be re-set when the tide or wind changes direction. This involves retreiving and re-deploying the anchor during which time the vessel will move off station. Also considerable damage can occur to a fragile sea-bed environment, due to the length of dragging before the traditional anchor becomes secure again and perhaps not even setting at all.

However, when deployed, the Tidal Anchor’s environmentally friendly, innovative design sets within its own length and remains safely in position with a high holding capability, thus protecting a fragile seabed. CAD modelling and FEA was carried out by Cardiff University. After extensive tank, beach and sea trials were undertaken (with support given by Swansea University through their Survey Vessel R.V.Noctiluca), the anchor has been developed into a secure, safe mooring solution for both leisure and working craft.

Once deployed, the anchor settles on the seabed attached to the vessel via a shackle through the Bucket Handle. The Flukes are free to rotate within the cut-outs in the Side Panels and hence move under their own weight to rest with their tips on the seabed – the angle of engagement is initially 16°. Loading the Bucket Handle (e.g. due to tidal/wind loading on the attached vessel) causes the front facing Fluke to dig into the seabed – this is promoted by a funneling effect caused by the claws in the Side Panel. Hence, the anchor buries itself into the sand, with the loading on the Fluke causing it to rotate into the maximum allowable position set by the Side Panel cutouts. The rear Fluke is also loaded and therefore contributes to the holding power of the anchor. Changing tides or wind conditions can vary the position of the loading, which causes the Bucket Handle to slide along the Slider Bars and re-engage on the opposing end – thus causing the rear facing Fluke to engage.

This totally unique innovative design, does not require structural welding during manufacture and is easily assembled.

In order to establish the market potential of the novel design, a demonstration model was entered and exhibited in the Innovation Showcase at Seawork International Exhibition 2017 in Southampton, where it received a European Commercial Marine Innovation Award in the category Marine Engineering and Construction.

A feasibility study is being carried out by Cardiff University into the viability of manufacturing the Tidal Anchor® in different material composites e.g. carbon fibre, as a light weight non reflective alternative for small inflatable craft. Patent Protection has now been granted in UK, Hong Kong, U.S.A, Australia, China, Germany and France.

Although the Tidal Anchor has shown great early potential, there is still a requirement for the project to go forward to market, where it’s anticipated there will be a strong demand. Funding to assist with this next stage is sought, and interested parties can find out more at www.tidalanchors.com

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