The development of new technologies for clean, reliable renewable energy is a key challenge for modern society. Tidal energy is an important renewable energy source with significant advantages over competing sources, including predictability and repeatability (Uihlein and Magagna, 2016). This paper is concerned with establishing the optimum operating performance of a range of novel vertical axis tidal turbines for micro-hydro power through analytical modelling. The development of wind turbine technology is significantly more progressed in this area, leading to potential technology transfer opportunities for tidal turbine developers. Roberts et al. (2016) have recently assessed a number of state-of-the-art tidal turbines and identified key challenges faced by these emerging technologies.