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ISWEC: experimental tests on a small scale prototype model

Date: October 14, 2013 at 16:54 GMT

Abstract: ISWEC (Inertial Sea Wave Energy Converter) is a system able to convert wave power into electrical power thanks to gyroscopic effects. ISWEC is composed of a buoy loosely moored to the seabed. The pitching motion of the buoy combined with the spinning velocity of a flywheel carried inside the buoy creates a torque along the precession axes. By using the gyroscopic torque to drive a power-takeoff (PTO) system, the capture of energy is possible. In this work a small scale prototype designed to work at the multi-directional wave tank at the University of Edinburgh has been analyzed.

The prototype was built and equipped with sensors to measure torque and velocity on the precession axes in order to evaluate the mechanical power in input to the PTO. It was then tested at the wave tank to validate the power conversion principle. ISWEC was then equipped with a sensor to measure angular and linear positions on the float and a campaign of tests in the wave flume at the Department of Hydraulics of the Politecnico di Torino was carried out to get a better understanding of its the performances.

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