Development of a point absorber wave energy converter for investigation of array wake effects in large scale experiments

Abstract : Wave energy from ocean waves is absorbed by using Wave Energy Converters (WECs). In order to extract a considerable amount of wave power at a location, in a cost-effective way, large numbers of WECs have to be arranged in arrays using a particular geo m etric configuration. Interactions between the individual WECs ("near field effects") affect the overall power production of the array. In addition, the wave height reduction behind an entire WEC array ("far field effects") may affect other users in the sea, the environment or even the coastline. Several numerical studies on large WEC arrays have already been performed, but large scale experimental studies, focussing on "near-field" and "far-field" wake effects of large WEC arrays are not available in literature. Within the HYDRALAB IV FP7 European programme, the WECwakes research project has been introduced, in order to perform experiments on large arrays of point absorber WECs, using different geometric configurations and inter-WEC spacings. The selected facility is the Shallow Water Wave Basin of the Danish Hydraulic Institute (DHI), in Denmark. The results from the WECwakes experimental tests will be useful in the validation and extension of the recently developed numerical models, as well as in providing insight to optimizing the geometric configurations of WEC arrays for real applications. The latter, also, aims at cost-effective configurations of WEC arrays for power production, and at quantifying the related environmental impact. The present paper focuses on the preparation of the WECwakes project and the development of the used WEC models.
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Vasiliki Stratigaki, Peter Troch, Tim Stallard, David Forehand, Marc Vantorre, et al.. Development of a point absorber wave energy converter for investigation of array wake effects in large scale experiments. International Conference of the Application of Physical Modelling to Port and Coastal Protection, 2012, Ghent, Belgium. ⟨hal-01201937⟩

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