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jpak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:35 AM
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Portugal Announces New Wave Energy Project

The viability of harnessing waves as a lucrative renewable energy source received a boost last week following the announcement that the world's first commercial wave energy project will begin delivering wave-generated energy to the north of Portugal later this month.

The first stage of the European Union-funded program, the result of two decades of research at Lisbon's Superior Technical Institute, will bring the first 2.25 megawatts ashore at Agucadoura, in northern Portugal, and will power 1,500 homes through the national state run electricity grid system according to an Inter Press Service (IPS) report.

Funded by a consortium headed by leading Portuguese renewable energy company Enersis, the venture uses groundbreaking Pelamis wave devices manufactured by Edinburgh firm Ocean Power Delivery, considered the world's leading wave technology.


With its geographical position and extensive coastline giving access to the larger and more powerful Atlantic waves, official estimates from Portugal's State Secretariat for Industry and Innovation have predicted wave power could account for up to 30 percent of the country's gross domestic product by 2050. Renewable energy experts have determined wave farms in Portugal could yield as much as three times as much energy as that produced by a wind turbine park for the same investment cost.

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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:37 AM
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1. Saving the best for last...

Extremely low environmental impact, relatively reliable baseload generation, cheap.

One wonders why wave has lagged behind the rest of the renewable technologies.

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sweetheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:46 AM
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2. anchoring,gear boxes and storm safeness
The mechanical stresses of ocean storms are significant. They have
dragged previous current generation prototypes off to sea in the pentland firth.

This anchoring question and robustness adds to cost, but as well, if you
look at waves, they have a slow frequency, though certainly, may lift a very
heavy weight relative to a nearby weight, and the device in this article
looks like a big sea snake, with each section up or down on the wave, and
i'll wager, inside each section, a gearbox or flywheel that is spun up like
how a rolex watch generates winding from your arm movement., and this then
would be generated to an alternator in each section.

Alternatively, the whole thing could be charged with hydraulic fluid, that is
pressurized and forced through an impulse turbine to generate rotational speeds
necessary for power generation.

I find it amazing that such a brilliant culture has not figured out how to
generate all its power from tides and waves, they are ideal.
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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. IIRC the pelamis uses hydrolics.

There's some pretty descriptive diagrams posted.
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