Following successful system commissioning, the dry test program of the latest generation resonant Wave Energy Converter (WEC) – CorPower S3 – has started. The first power was delivered to the Swedish grid in April 2017, with the WEC operating in simulated waves using a 500kW Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) test rig in CorPower’s integration facility in Stockholm.
The rigorous dry test program has been designed to accelerate the product development and de-risk the upcoming ocean demonstration. The HIL-rig is used to supply the device with mechanical loading representing the full range of sea states, allowing debugging and stabilizing the system in simulated waves, including storm conditions.
Jean-Michel Chauvet, Director of Integration & Test at CorPower: “This dry-testing capability has already proven invaluable to the project, allowing us to reach safe and reliable operation of our machine in a controlled environment. We are currently ramping up the system through safety and functional testing, working step-wise to reach full power. The dry test program will be concluded with non-interrupt testing, aiming to deliver a stable machine with high availability through the upcoming ocean deployment in Scotland”
Tim Hurst, Managing Director, Wave Energy Scotland: “We are very pleased to see CorPower forging ahead with their technology development. Open-sea testing is the next phase and we look forward to welcoming them to the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney later this year”
CorPower’s product development follows a structured five-stage verification process established as best practices for ocean energy devices by International Energy Agency-OES and Wave Energy Scotland. It involves step-wise validation of survivability, performance, reliability and economics starting with small scale prototypes in Stage 1, continued by sub-system testing and then fully integrated WEC in increasing scales up to array demonstration in Stage 5. The current Stage 3 program follows the prior testing of multiple prototypes in smaller scales performed in Portugal, France and Sweden since 2013, and thousands of hours of numerical simulation work.
Delivering this milestone marks an important step for wave energy. The verification of CorPower’s phase controlled WEC technology is expected to bring significant improvement to the reliability and competitiveness of harvesting energy from ocean waves.
HiDrive and HiWave projects
CorPower Ocean is currently in the stage 3 of its pilot program, taking a scale 1:2 WEC through structured verification by dry testing it in a rig in Stockholm, followed by ocean deployment at the European Marine Energy Centre’s (EMEC’s) Scapa Flow test site in Orkney (Scotland). Stage 3 demonstration is supported by best practice from EMEC in Orkney, alongside the experience from offshore power generation company Iberdrola Engineering, the University of Edinburgh, and WavEC Offshore Renewables’ expertise in cost and performance modelling.
HiDrive is the most advanced project funded by Wave Energy Scotland, scheduled to complete Stage 3 testing within 2017. A total of €6.5 million has been invested in the Stage 3 program by InnoEnergy, the Swedish Energy Agency and Wave Energy Scotland.
About CorPower Ocean
CorPower Ocean, start-up supported by InnoEnergy, brings a new class of high efficiency Wave Energy Converter, enabling robust and cost effective harvesting of electricity from ocean waves.
The design principle is inspired by the pumping principles of the human heart and offers five times more energy per ton of device compared to previously known technology. This allows a large amount of energy to be harvested using a small low-cost device. The system has excellent survivability in storms, thanks to being inherently transparent to incoming wave energy. The step-change increase in structural efficiency is enabled by a novel system design and advanced control technology – providing a path for wave energy to overtake modern wind turbines in structural efficiency and long term competitiveness.