The activities of the WavEC numerical modeling group have been essentially focused on the performance analyses of floating structures, mostly wave energy converters (WEC) and, more recently, floating wind turbines (FWT). Studies are usually carried out using numerical tools, both commercial (e.g. Wamit and Orcaflex) and in-house developed tools. The development of codes to study the dynamics of single devices and the performance of farms of WECs or FOWT (floating offshore wind turbines) has been a particularly active field in recent years.
Moreover, the modeling group has also been working actively in the development of tools to optimize O&M strategies for farms of WECs and FOWTs and, in a joint effort with the economical group, techno-economic models to estimate the levelized cost of energy to estimate the LCOE and other financial indicators for offshore projects.
WavEC has been working with several developers, all around the world, at the conceptual level mostly in an attempt to optimize the hydrodynamic characteristics on the concepts. Since 2003 WavEC has been providing this type of services, which eventually has contributed to enlarge the knowledge on floating body’s dynamics.
The involvement in the offshore renewable energy sector at an international level allowed the WavEC to achieve a good understanding of the technology development stage. For this reason investors have often requested WavEC for strategic support, which typically requires a numerical comparative performance evaluation of different concepts.
The performance evaluation of offshore renewable energy systems is nowadays one of the most common activities of the numerical modeling group as investors and developers are frequently interested in an independent evaluation of their concepts. For this purpose an in-house developed wave-to-wire model is used, which allows modeling the entire chain of energy conversion from the hydrodynamic interaction till the energy fed into the grid.
Nowadays developers and investors are very interested not only in the concept performance from the energy production perspective, but mostly in knowing the technology cost-effectiveness. In this context, WavEC has been providing technoeconomic support to several companies in the offshore renewable energy sector using an in-house developed tool that combines the wave-to-wire model with an economic module, which allows the user to estimate the actual and future capital expenditure (CAPEX), operational expenditure (OPEX) and, eventually, the levelized cost of energy (LCOE).
FWT - Operationality and Extreme Loads on Floating Wind Turbines (Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia).
OC4 – Offshore Code Comparison Collaboration Continuation (international forum for FWT dynamics code verification).
MMREd - Modeling Marine Renewable Energy devices; Designing for Survivability.
KIC-OTS (Offshore Test Station) – Development of a software package to support O&M activities.
Demowfloat (With technology area)