Protean concludes pre-commercial WEC trials

Protean Wave Energy has retrieved its wave energy device after wrapping up the final round of pre-commercial trials off Western Australia.

The testing experience provided lessons on installation, maintenance, recovery, and survivability of the WEC unit, in addition to the confirmation of power capture, Protean informed.

Early estimates indicate that in its current form with modifications to the energy generation system the WEC will generate average power in the rage 1 – 2kW and peak at over 5kW, depending on the wave climate, according to Protean, who anticipates to further improve the power outputs by modifying the form of the WEC unit.

Steve Rogers, Managing Director and CEO of Protean, said: “The results from this phase of testing and modeling work has provided us with the information needed to progress the commercialization of the WEC. It provides a solid foundation for the next stage of detailed design, material selection, and production design to be completed before we progress to a commercial trial.”

Detailed design will be conducted over the coming months, and will include component design, reliability testing, manufacturing specification and production design.

Protean states the target for completion of the commercial prototype WEC is set for the first quarter of 2017, with commercial wave energy array trial planned for second quarter of 2017.

Over five different sites for commercial wave farm demonstration are being evaluated, with locations ranging from California, across Galway Bay in Ireland, Orkney in Scotland, Singapore, and all the way back to Australia.

A full evaluation to determine the best route to commercialization, which will consider cost, funding potential, schedule, infrastructure, support and proximity to markets, will be concluded in the first quarter of 2017.