The npower juice fund, which finances marine energy research and development, is to fund seven new projects, which the company says will help marine renewable energy companies better understand some of the issues surrounding the fledgling industry.

The new projects cover a wide spectrum of research and activity, ranging from the investigation of methodologies for assessing the effects of marine turbines and wave devices on marine mammals, to developing better health and safety practices for the maintenance of off-shore devices.

Robert Harper, product manager of environment and renewables at npower, said: The UK leads the world in the development of marine renewables technology, and is home to more wave and tidal stream developers than any other country. npower research suggests that 1.6 million homes could be powered by the energy of the sea in the future.

Funding these seven new projects will mean another step forward in understanding and realizing the potential of marine renewable energy – and what it has to offer as part of the UK’s energy mix for the future.