IMPACT’s grid integration crew for wave energy submits final report

The partners in the EU-backed IMPACT wave energy project have submitted the final report for the work package which supported the design of test rigs for wave energy converters by focusing on aspects of the electrical subsystems.

Illustration (Courtesy of MaREI)
Illustration (Courtesy of MaREI)
Illustration (Courtesy of MaREI)

Power generated by a wave energy converter device to be delivered to the electric grid must fulfil quality requirements specified by a grid owner and collected in grid codes, which often differ for each country.

It is essential that the parameters of the designed test rigs allow for representing the various conditions required by the country-specific grid codes, according to the IMPACT project.

In that regard, SINTEF Energy Research has, with the support from VGA and Yavin Four Consultants, produced a final report related to the work package focusing on grid integration and electrical compliance.

The work was centred on reviewing grid codes to identify performance requirements and possible compliance tests to be implemented by the rig(s), and creating a wave-to-wire model to simulate the transfer of power from the wave energy converters to the grid.

Also, the partners focused on providing recommendations for the general layout of the electrical design and specifications for the necessary electrical components.

Despite most of the activities being conducted amid COVID restrictions, the work progressed well and as expected, according to IMPACT project.

SINTEF Energy’s Paula Garcia Rosa, who led the team behind the report, said: “As this work package was part of the initial phase of the project, no tests at VGA facilities were scheduled, and we could easily adapt the work to our home offices and virtual meetings.

“The activities were mainly conducted by SINTEF Energy Research, but we also had the opportunity to collaborate with Yavin Four Consultants during the development of the wave-to-wire model, and with VGA during the specification of electrical components. For me, this was an enriching experience, where we were working in an interdisciplinary team with diverse backgrounds and expertise.”

Results from this work package will mainly be used to support the choice of electrical components in the DHIL Testing Platform Development work package.

The three-year IMPACT project, supported by €3.3 million from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program, brings together cross-functional ocean energy and industrial engineering competence and testing facilities from five partners across Europe who joined forces to develop next-generation testing approaches for wave energy devices.

The project will further develop the proposed 250kW Dual Hardware-In-the-Loop (DHIL) testing platform for wave energy devices, based on a technology which expands the capabilities of the already established Hardware-In-the-Loop technique.