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New perspectives on the long term feasibility of wave energy conversion: a techno-economical approach

Date: November 07, 2013 at 10:28 GMT

This paper presents a new approach for the analysis of the major principles for harvesting wave energy that has been proposed so far (i.e. attenuators, point absorbers and flaps). The analysis is based on a performance and cost model which makes an abstraction of the main technical and economical parameters behind each capture principle. Among the parameters considered are the geometry, hydrodynamics, PTO as well as material weight and cost. Each device configuration (i.e. basic dimensions and PTO parameters) has been selected to optimise the economic performance at a specific location off the Basque coast. The model has been implemented in a software tool of modular design that allows the assessment of the most typical concepts within a shared environment.
Results from the comparison of the relative cost of energy for several wave energy principles are shown and point to the feasibility of specific concepts. These conclusions constitute a benchmark that might benefit the industry and improve market confidence in wave energy technology. 

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