In the Atlantic arc from Iceland to Portugal, Europe has some of the best natural wave resources in the world; with the total potential European ocean wave power estimated to be in the range 150 -240 TWh per annum. The main barrier to wave energy expansion is the lack of a large, commercial-scale demonstration of the technology. In addition, the efficiency of devices is limited and needs to be improved.
The WAVEPORT project aims to address this shortfall by demonstrating a large scale grid connected, 600kW peak generator rated, point absorber Wave Energy Converter - for which a smaller scale prototype has already been tested.
WAVEPORT will also expedite the development of alternative devices by installing a ten port open platform 1.5MW rated underwater substation pod for the validation of future wave energy converters. To address the need for improved efficiency; a novel Real-Time Wave-by-Wave tuning system will be developed and demonstrated.
The aims are:
- Reduce the capital infrastructure cost of the WEC device to less than 2000/kW by 2020. - Accelerate the development of a wavefarm site within the Santona site in Spain, to 90 MW by 2020 generating over 500 GWh per annum, offsetting approx 215,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum - Accelerate the development of European wave farms to 0.97 GW by 2020 generating over 6 TWh offsetting approx. 2.6 mT of CO2 per annum - Facilitating an open platform approach for utilities and WEC developers through the use of the Underwater Sub-Station Pod, further reducing the risks associated with investment in this technology - Reduce the cost of Wave energy generated electricity to 4.3 c /kWh by 2020 - Improvement on the energy efficiency of wave energy devices by at least 35 % (loading factor to at least 75%) by utilising the Real-Time Wave-by-Wave tuning system. - Create 7600 jobs in the renewable energy sector over the period to 2020 by developing a European based wave energy industry worth 1.9 billion in cumulative sales.
Funding: European Comission (FP7)
WavEC Coordinator: Miguel Lopes
Total Funding (Requested EU contribution): € 4 591 850,50
WavEC Funding: € 318 000
Duration: 1 February 2010 – 1 February 2014 (48 months)
Coordinator: UK Intelligent Systems Research Institute (ISRI)
Partners: ISRI (United Kingdom), Wave Energy Centre (Portugal), University of Exeter (United Kingdom), Degima (Spain), Fugro-Oceanor AS (Norway), Ocean Power Technologies Inc., (USA).