BioPower Systems (BPS) has produced a power conversion module for wave energy projects called O-Drive with built-in short-term storage that could improve grid stability.
O-Drive is designed to be compatible with most wave energy device concepts, and is being developed as a plug-and-play solution for converting the mechanical energy absorbed from the waves into grid-quality electricity, according to BPS.
Every O-Drive comes with built-in short-term storage that is used to smooth the ‘wavy’ input and to help ride through lulls. BPS states that the storage can be used to dispatch energy on demand, for a short duration, in response to a supply outage elsewhere on the grid.
This is a form of ‘synthetic inertia’, which would contribute to frequency control, and would support grid stability during the critical period when reserve capacity in the grid is being ramped up, BPS said.
“With all of the problems now evident in Australia’s energy market it makes clear sense to consider wave energy more seriously, as it is the most consistent form of renewable energy, and with O-Drive it can improve grid stability,” BPS said.
BPS’ O-Drive module was verified by the certification body DNV GL in October 2015, ahead of the deployment of its bioWAVE wave energy device that took place a couple of months later off the Port Fairy, Victoria, Australia.