EEL Energy’s biomimetic tidal turbine exceeds expectations
French company EEL Energy has informed about very encouraging results gained through the test campaign for its tidal energy device, which uses undulating membrane to produce energy.
According to EEL Energy, it has successfully scaled up with a 30kW tidal generator tested in the harbor of Brest, in French region of Brittany, over the last nine months.
Namely, the results of the pilot exceeded the company’s expectations, and catapulted a physical limit that applies to all conventional tidal turbines, EEL Energy said.
The company’s undulating membrane generator managed to capture 62% of the energy of the current, exceeding for the first time the famous Betz law that sets a physical limit at 59%, EEL claims.
EEL Energy said it plans to continue with the trials of its technology, with its first pre-commercial 30-50kW machine planned for in-river testing in June 2023.
The French company also added it is preparing a 750kW marine energy project, without revealing any additional details.
“These achievements were made possible thanks to the FEDER Hauts de France funds and the Interreg ENCORE program, as well as support from Frisquet, Dassault Systèmes, 3DEXPERIENCE Lab and Aquanord,” the company said in a statement.
EEL Energy’s technology, built as a floating device, captures kinetic energy from river or tidal currents near the water surface where highest water velocity is typically found.
The company’s tidal energy converter has been designed to replicate the undulating movements of marine life, consisting of a membrane that optimizes energy transfer by coupling fluid flow with an undulating structure.
Energy is converted along the whole length of the membrane surface which undulates under moving fluid pressure, and this periodic motion is transformed into electricity by an electromechanical system.
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