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A Methodology for Near-Shore Wave Resource Assessment

Date: October 14, 2013 at 15:12 GMT

Abstract: Accurate estimates of the available wave power resource are essential for the commercialisation of wave energy converters. Wave resource assessment is needed for site selection, power generation forecasting, research and development and market valuation, all of which have different accuracy requirements.

For this reason, Aquamarine Power is working towards creating a standardised method of wave resource modelling and calculation, specifically tailored towards Aquamarine Power’s Oyster technology. The methodology outlined in this paper provides a framework for providing resource assessments which are fit for purpose, whilst making the best use of computational and personnel resources.

A four tier assessment system has been developed in which increasingly detailed modelling and calculations provide increasingly accurate estimations of the exploitable wave resource, and the predicted energy generation at a site. Wave models developed in DHI’s MIKE21 spectral waves software, are used to provide time varying wave conditions across the frequency and directional spectrum. A wave resource calculation methodology has been developed to interpret modelled results using a combination of linear, Stokes and Cnoidal wave theories, and results from tank testing of scale wave energy converters.

Together, the wave modelling and calculation methods provide estimates of the raw wave resource present at a site, and the forecast power produced at that site by a wave energy converter. This provides information which is essential to the development of the wave power industry.

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