Inventor of 'Duck' technology wins Saltire Prize medal

Prof Stephen Salter Prof Salter led the Edinburgh University team which developed the 'Salter's Duck' device

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A scientist described as the "founding father" of wave power technology has been awarded the inaugural Saltire Prize medal.

Professor Stephen Salter led the team which designed the "Salter's Duck" device in the 1970s, to convert natural power from waves into electricity.

He was unveiled as the winner in recognition of his role in the development of marine energy.

Prof Salter said he was "honoured and delighted" to receive the award.

He said: "I now understand the tradition for Oscar winners to say that the credit should go to directors, other actors, camera operators and film crew.

"In my case it is the number of brilliant young engineers and students who worked with me in the 70s and 80s."

Prof Salter said many of the ideas were now being applied to other renewable energy sources.

"Our only mistake was doing it too early - but that is better than too late," he added.

'Visionary work'

The annual medal is presented under the auspices of Scotland's £10m Saltire Prize marine energy challenge.

It has been created by the Scottish government to recognise outstanding contributions by individuals and groups to the development of wave or tidal power.

First Minister Alex Salmond said: "Scotland leads the world in the development of power generation from our seas and oceans and the vision, ambition and drive shown by Prof Salter has played no small part in that achievement."

The award was presented at the Scottish Renewables annual conference dinner in Glasgow.

Chief executive Niall Stuart added: "It is no exaggeration to say that Professor Stephen Salter is the 'founding father' of Scotland's wave and tidal sector and this award is a fitting civic recognition on behalf of the people of Scotland for his pioneering and visionary work."

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