Three WEC full size prototypes lined up for deployment at WETS, Hawaii

And now some good news:

Three wave energy converters developers are getting ready to deploy their full scale prototypes at the Oahu, Hawaii, USA wave energy test site (WETS) after receiving significant funding from USA Energy Department. They are:

Oceanlinx WEC enters liquidation

Difficult to be positive about the WEC sector outlook these days.

In the last few weeks we had Pelamis in administration, then Aquamarine power downsizing and now Oceanlinx entering liquidation.

We knew Oceanlinx was struggling. Recovering after that serious incident early this year – when their full scale prototype sank during deployment – was clearly a massive challenge. Sadly they didn’t succeed.

It is critical to ensure that all the R&D work doesn’t get wasted. Pelamis assets are now with Wave Energy Scotland a government agency with the objective of encouraging innovation and/through collaboration between developers, engineers and academia. Where will Oceanlinx assets and IP end up?

MeyGen: a very large tidal array project in the Pentland Firth, UK – Maritime Journal

The first phase of the MeyGen project – scheduled during 2015 – includes the installation on the seabed of four 1.5MW turbines and onshore infrastructure. The project aim is to install a total of over 250 turbines in the Pentland Firth generating nearly 400MW.

It is run by MeyGen Limited (owned by Atlantis Resources) and funded by a syndicate including: Atlantis; the UK Department of Energy & Climate Change; the Crown Estate; Scottish Enterprise; Highlands and Islands Enterprise. Further project partners (supply chain) include ABB, Andritz Hydro Hammerfest, Global Energy Group and James Fisher Plc


Germany: Share of energy generated from renewables keeps rising – striking numbers

Not strictly on marine renewables, but few points worth keeping in mind:

On May 11th, 2014 just after 12.00 hours, 67% of total generated electricity in Germany was coming from wind and PV. ThinkProgress gives a 74% share of total energy demand from renewables that – I suppose – is an estimate that accounts for all renewables as well as non-electric energy demands.

This is in a specific day (a Sunday!) and time, but also impressive is the day average (rather than peak) : 48% of electricity produced in Germany on May 11 was from renewables. As well as noting that both on 09th and 10th  of May renewables were above 40% day average.

As stated in the article, it is another demonstration that

a modern electricity system such as the German one can already accept large penetration rates of variable but predictable renewable energy sources such as wind and solar PV power

…as well as tidal and wave , of course

WindFloat floating wind – US DoE supports planned wind farm deployment offshore Oregon coast

WindFloat Pacific Project receives significant support from U.S. Department of Energy.

The plan is for five WindFloat 6 MW floating wind turbines to be deployed offshore the Oregon coast

Principle Power, Inc. (Principle Power) is pleased to announce The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today selected the WindFloat Pacific project for up to $47 million in matching grant funding to accelerate development of the 30-megawatt floating offshore wind farm proposed for the deep waters off Coos Bay, Oregon. […]

CETO 6: the new 1 MW WEC design by Carnegie


Carnegie Wave Energy has announced plans to develop a new generation of their CETO devices. CETO 6 power rating is 1 MW. This is a significant step change compared to the present design. Another significant change is the inclusion of electric power generation within the buoyant actuator. Up to now, all CETO systems included a shore-based generator driven by high pressure water produced by the wave energy conversion (WEC) devices. It is assumed that the new PTO design significantly increases power conversion efficiency, reduces costs and allows a more flexible deployment.

Carnegie target is to deploy a 3 devices demonstration array in 2016 aiming at offering CETO 6 as their first commercial device.

This is potentially a very significant milestone for the WEC sector. A lot of work is going into optimization of WEC arrays in preparation for wave farms deployments. However, it is obvious that the WEC device power rating has a massive impact on the commercial viability of the wave farm. With the majority of WEC devices presently rated at few hundred kW, it is very expensive and quite impractical to install, operate and maintain a wave farm of a significant power output. I think only when developers will be talking of arrays of WEC devices each rated few MW that wave energy would start making a significant contribution to power generation. Until then, its role would be limited to possibly supporting islands and isolated coastal communities.


Tenerife to install wave energy plants – Renewable Energy Magazine


Langlee Wave Power 132kW Robusto wave energy generator will be installed in the first phase. Langlee is indicating that further deployments are planned. Langlee Wave Power has also signed a similar agreement with the Lanzarote Island Council to install a 500kW pilot plant.

Robusto is a semi-submersible floating wave power converter measuring 30×50 metres. It is normally installed at sites of 40-100 meter water depth with four mooring lines to keep it in position.

The device is assembled onshore and then towed to site. Hence some components manufacturing and assembly will also be carried out at a site in the Canary Islands.