Fortum, a company engaged in the generation, distribution and sale of electricity, has acquired an 8.4% share in AW-Energy, a Finnish wave energy technology company.

AW-Energy’s innovation, WaveRoller, is a patented product design for the generation of electricity from ocean waves. While most wave energy solutions utilize the movement of the ocean surface to create electricity, WaveRoller is the first solution to harness near-shore bottom waves.

The benefits of bottom wave technology compared to other wave energy devices include superior storm-resisting power, no visual impact and practically no noise generation.

Founded in 2002, the company is now testing the WaveRoller in Peniche, Portugal, with a 10KW unit. The goal is to implement a 1MW pilot plant supplying electricity to the grid in Portugal during 2008-09.

Timo Karttinen, senior vice president of Fortum, said: As a leading power producer in the Nordic countries and around the Baltic Rim area, it is our duty to be part of the solution in curbing climate change – not part of the problem. Exploring and investing in promising new CO2-free energy production technologies is one way to shoulder this responsibility.