Seapower wraps up WEC construction

Ireland-based wave energy developer Seapower has completed the construction of its scaled wave energy converter set for testing at the SmartBay Test Site in Galway Bay, Ireland.

Seapower is currently leading a SEAI funded 1:4 scale project which will see the platform at its current development level undergo performance testing as well as extreme survival tests in operational sea trials for the first time.

The company has informed that the construction of the WEC has been completed, and that it is currently undergoing wet testing.

“Seapower engineers have designed this WEC broadly to DNV standards and guidelines and the design has come through a rigorous third party evaluation process,” Seapower said.

The second stage of the project will involve testing and installing a demonstrator power take-off (PTO) unit composed of gearing coupled to an electrical generator on the hinge of the platform, according to Seapower.

Data from this testing will feed into the design of the full scale WEC and full scale PTO.

To remind, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) granted over €1 million for the project in October, 2015.

Furthermore, the company is involved in the WES-funded Attenuator Cost of Energy Reduction (ACER) project, together with 4C Engineering. The project is currently testing novel configurations of the floating platform’s pontoon shapes at 1:25 model scale, along with developing a novel WEC damping strategy.

Also, Seapower has a supporting role in WES-funded PTO project, together with partners Limerick Wave, and wind turbine gearbox designers Romax Technologies.

The feasibility and techno-economic study for the project has almost been completed, according to Seapower.

The next phase will consider tank testing with a model of the SeaPower Platform with representative PTO options installed on board, along with considerably more bench testing of the geared PTO transmission options, Seapower informed.