After 18 months of combined dry and ocean testing of C3 wave energy converter, CorPower Ocean completed the demonstration of the device achieving the results said to support a step-change improvement in survivability and competitiveness of wave energy.
By verifying the ability to solve the two major challenges for wave energy – storm survivability combined with significant power production – a major demonstration milestone has been completed, according to Swedish developer CorPower Ocean.
The measured power production of the half-scale C3 device in the ocean was consistent with the expectations from simulation models and prior dry testing with simulated waves, CorPower said.
The tested C3 resonant wave device has added new functions to wave energy, including novel storm protection mode and novel phase control technology – said to be the key to unlocking the potential of yet untapped wave energy sector.
CorPower’s storm protection mode was proven effective in minimizing motion and loads, providing robust operation in storm conditions, while the new phase control technology called WaveSpring enabled a threefold increase in average power capture for a given buoy size, according to CorPower Ocean.
As part of the project, the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) – which provided a testing berth for the C3 device – issued a ‘Performance Statement’ verifying measured performance.
Patrik Möller, CEO at CorPower Ocean, said: “Based on the results, the projected performance of the next generation commercial scale C4 machine has been increased.
“With C4, the structural efficiency of wave energy is expected to improve by more than five times compared to current state-of-the-art, bringing wave energy above 10 MWh/ton, which is comparable to leading wind turbines.
“Getting more energy with less equipment means lower CAPEX per MW. Smaller lighter machines are easier to handle using low cost vessels, giving less costly operations and maintenance.”
Elaine Buck, Technical Director at EMEC, added: “CorPower’s wave energy converter has been put through a rigorous 18-month test program, beginning with onshore power take-off tests in Sweden using a bespoke hardware-in-the-loop test rig, and culminating with ocean testing at EMEC’s scale test site at Scapa Flow in Orkney.
“EMEC has overseen the dry and wet testing of the machine, ensuring strict quality management and quality assurance of the verification process and providing Performance Statements for both stages.“
The project was financed by Wave Energy Scotland, InnoEnergy, Swedish Energy Agency and Interreg NWE FORESEA.