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November 2013 Issue
Pelamis WEC Moves Closer to Commercialization
Tank testing of scale models to develop the next generation of Pelamis Wave Power's (Edinburgh, Scotland) wave energy converter (WEC) machines have been successfully completed.
The tank testing process forms a key part of a £1.4 million project commissioned and funded by the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI), which is looking to boost the cost-effectiveness of large-scale WEC arrays in U.K. waters.
The two 29th-scale Pelamis P2e models featured a number of potential improvements to the current Pelamis P2, such as larger and elliptically shaped tubes, different numbers of joints and tube lengths, and enhanced control systems.
The tank testing allowed for the most extreme storm conditions to be applied over extended periods of time. The testing was undertaken over one month in a wave basin at the École Centrale de Nantes in France. The models were exposed to the full-scale equivalent of 50 hours of extreme storms, with waves up to 23 meters high. These results drive the engineering design program and provide robust evidence for verification purposes.
In the tank tests, new control algorithms showed an increase of 100 percent more power capture in small and medium seas than those previously implemented. This demonstrates huge potential reduction in the cost of energy from Pelamis technology achievable through software upgrades alone.
The P2e design is larger, more powerful, and developed for volume production and long-term reliability. These improvements are intended to satisfy the demand for commercial-scale wave farms currently being developed in Scottish waters and beyond.
The new P2e design, now moving into the detailed design phase, builds on the successful demonstration of two P2 machines in Orkney at the European Marine Energy Centre.
Kongsberg to Deliver Vessel Control for Wind Turbine Jack-Up
Nordic Yards in Wismar, Germany, has awarded Kongsberg Maritime (Kongsberg, Norway) a contract to deliver an Integrated Vessel Control System for a new build 80-meter wind turbine service jack-up vessel, owned by DBB Jack-Up (Aarhus, Denmark). The integrated full-picture solution covers navigation, automation and maneuvering systems, and will be one of the first to feature Kongsberg Maritime's recently launched LAN-based radar system.
The new radar concept, K-Bridge composite picture radar CP360, is an integral part of the K-Bridge navigation system to be installed. With new, user-friendly control of radar video and tracking, CP360 distributes digital radar signals on a local area network (LAN). This makes possible combining radar images from multiple radar transceivers and displaying them as a single composite picture, eliminating blind sectors and providing a single 360-degree view, covering different ranges, around the vessel.
The complete delivery to DBB Jack-Up's new vessel includes K-Chief alarm monitoring and control system, K-Thrust thruster control system, K-Bridge integrated navigation system and K-Pos DP-22 dynamic positioning. All key systems are accessible through Kongsberg Maritime's K-Master system, a dual redundant, seated aft and forward bridge solution, which will act as the control center for vessel navigation, maneuvering and jack-up operations.
Determining Competitive Interest for Wind Leasing Offshore Oregon
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) issued a request to determine whether there is competitive interest in leasing an area offshore Oregon that Principle Power Inc. (Seattle, Washington) has proposed for a pilot-scale floating wind energy project.
The proposed WindFloat Pacific Project, which would be located about 16 nautical miles west of Coos Bay, Oregon, in about 1,200 feet of water, is designed to generate 30 megawatts of electricity from five WindFloat units, each equipped with a 6-megawatt offshore wind turbine. The proposed lease area covers about 15 square miles. In addition to inquiring about competitive interest, BOEM is also seeking public comment on the proposal, its potential environmental consequences and the use of the area in which the proposed project would be located.
The Windfloat Pacific Project is the latest in a series of lease initiatives BOEM has undertaken to support offshore wind energy development. BOEM has issued four lease approvals on the Atlantic Coast: two noncompetitive (Cape Wind in Nantucket Sound and an area off Delaware) and two competitive (Massachusetts-Rhode Island and Virginia). The competitive lease sales generated $5.4 million in high bids for 277,549 acres on the U.S. Continental Shelf. Combined, these areas could generate enough renewable energy to power 1.7 million homes.
Additional competitive auctions for wind energy areas offshore Maryland, New Jersey and Massachusetts will be held over the next year.
Alstom Teams With GDF Suez to Pitch Pilot Tidal Farms
Alstom (Levallois-Perret, France) and GDF Suez (Paris, France) will prepare a joint project to respond to the call for expressions of interest for pilot tidal farms announced by French President François Hollande. The companies will establish the various technical parameters to harness the marine currents at the Raz Blanchard site, where the pilot farms will be installed, near the Port of Cherbourg. They will also propose an operation and maintenance strategy.
Alstom is successfully testing its 1-megawatt tidal turbine off Scotland's Orkney Islands, which has reached the full nominal power of 1 megawatt, generating more than 10 megawatt-hours of electricity on the grid. Trials performed in pilot farms will test the performance of the turbine under real operating conditions.
Alstom also signed an agreement with Ports Normands Associés that could allow it to perform final turbine assembly, the erection of the foundations and all maintenance operations from Cherbourg, if it is awarded the Raz Blanchard pilot farms.
The port's benefits include a development plan covering 40 hectares for infrastructure devoted to tidal power, as well as the proximity of the Raz Blanchard site to the British coastline, which represents a substantial potential market.
2014: JAN | MARCH | MAY | JULY | SEPT | NOV
2013: JAN | MARCH | MAY | JULY | SEPT | NOV