Wave & Tide
UK based 40South Limited is to install a 150 kilowatt wave power module outside Livorno Port in Tuscany. The device uses two connected buoyant sections that sit one above the other at different depths. The lower section is moored to the seabed. The arms that connect them move inside each other like pistons, generating power as they move. The whole structure sits below the sea surface and automatically adjusts its vertical position in the water depending on conditions – sinking deeper during large, potentially damaging storms. This also helps the device produce consistent levels of power.
A team of mathematicians and engineers from the University of Exeter and Tel Aviv University have devised a means of accurately predicting the power of the next incoming wave in order to make wave power technology far more efficient – potentially extracting twice as much energy as is currently possible. The key challenges for wave power generation are preventing devices being damaged by the hostile marine environment and improving the efficiency of energy capture from the waves. This research enables devices to accurately predict the power of the next wave in order to extract the maximum energy by controlling the … Continue Reading
According to a new study by Stanford researcher Mark Jacobson and Mark Delucchi, of the University of California-Davis, by 2030 all new energy generation could come from wind, water and solar, and by 2050, all pre-existing energy production could be converted to renewables, using only technology that is already available and at a similar cost to using fossil fuels. Their plan calls for using wind, water and solar energy to generate power, with wind and solar power contributing 90 percent of the needed energy. Geothermal and hydroelectric sources would each contribute about 4 percent with the remaining 2 percent from wave … Continue Reading
The Florida Institute of Technology is testing a new technology to convert the energy produced by waves into electricity, The so-called Wing Waves work by tapping the elliptical motion of waves 20 to 30 metres beneath the surface and converting it into mechanical energy that can be used to generate power. Each trapezoid-shaped wing of the device is 2.5 metres in height and 5 metres wide. They can sway 30 degrees from side to side and complete the arc in 8 to 10 seconds. An aluminium prototype is now working off the Florida coast. Operational models would be built out … Continue Reading
Back in 2008, we wrote about the discovery by Dr Frank Fish that the bumps on humpback whale flippers gave the whales more power and manouverability (see Frank Fish’s Fin Fans) and the possibility of this being applied to the design of wind turbines. Now the US Navy has taken up the idea. US Naval Academy researchers have shown that underwater turbine blades with bumps are more effective in extracting energy at low speeds. The blades do not degrade performance at high flow speeds or increase the mechanical complexity of the turbine. Naval Academy Professor Mark Murray explained that “We … Continue Reading
Free Flow Power has been granted rights to explore the potential for dozens of turbine locations along the 3,700 kilometre Mississippi Rriver. The company is working on a plan to install hundreds of 40-kilowatt hydrokinetic turbines, each the size of a large jet engine, along the bottom of the River. The project developers say that this could potentially produce more than a gigawatt of electricity – enough to power 250,000 homes. There is currently just one commercial hydrokinetic river turbine in use on the Mississippi – an installation by Texas-based Hydro Green Energy near Hastings, Minnesota. Henry Dormitzer, the company’s … Continue Reading
Atlantis Resources Corporation has unveiled the largest and most powerful tidal power turbine ever built. It is due for installation at a dedicated berth at the European Marine Energy Centre, located in Orkney, Scotland later this summer. Despatching 1 megawatt of predictable power at a water velocity of 2.65m/s, the turbine is designed for harsh weather and rough, open ocean environments such as those found off the Scottish coast. The turbine has an 18 meter rotor diameter, weighs 130 tonnes and stands at a height of 22.5 meters. The giant turbine is expected to be environmentally benign due to a … Continue Reading
Independent Natural Resources Inc, has received a permit for a wave powered facility to desalinate water off the coast of Freeport, Texas. The company hopes that the system will be in operation by the end of the year. The facility will be a 25 by 50 metre platform under which there will be 18 of the company’s SEADOG wave pumps. Each pump will send water up through three water wheels connected to a generator. The electricity from the generator will be used to power a reverse osmosis desalination machine. The SEADOG pumps, each of which are about two metres in … Continue Reading
Minesto, a Swedish company which is a spin-off from Saab, has obtained funding to test underwater tidal power kites off the coast of Northern Ireland. The underwater tidal kite consists of a turbine, generator, rudder, which is attached to the bottom with a tether. According to Minesto, it can produce energy in deep water with low flow velocity where no other known tidal technology can operate. Each tidal power kite will produce 0.5 megawatt and will fit into a standard shipping contaner.
The world’s largest tidal power station is to be constructed off the west coast of South Korea at Incheon. GS Engineering and Construction has signed a memorandum of understanding with Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power to begin construction next year with a view to completion around 2017. The power station will have a capacity of 1.32 gigawatts – 3.4 times greater than the capacity of the Rance Tidal Power Station in France which is currently the world’s largest tidal power station. The facility will provide 4.5% of South Korea’s demand for household energy. Incheon is a city of 2,500,000 close … Continue Reading