Home' Afloat : AFLOAT May 2016 Contents 40 AFLOAT.com.au May 2016
wave power. Testing
at AMC could one day
lead to wave energy
arrays being deployed
coastlines or islands,
renewable energy to
onshore users,” Mr
The second pro-
ject is the Australian
Wave Energy Atlas
project, led by CSIRO
with the Bureau of
Meteorology and AMC, with industry partners Carnegie Wave
Energy Ltd and Biopower Systems Pty Ltd.
“ The Atlas project is focused on removing obstacles for
Australia’s ocean energy industry. This includes making baseline
information on the available energy resource and allocations of
the marine domain easily available to the sector,” C SIRO Oceans
and Atmosphere project lead, Dr Mark Hemer, said.
AMC project lead, Associate Professor Irene Penesis, said
both projects sought to understand the downstream impact of
wave energy farms on the shoreline and marine environment. Very
limited modelling work has been completed worldwide and results
have never before been validated with physical experiments.
“No-one really understands the impact an array of devices
will have further downstream,” Associate Professor Penesis said.
“ When you have more than one device located near shore,
each of those devices will capture energy from the waves and
convert it into mechanical and electrical power. But in doing
that, we’re taking energy away from the nearby system and the
environment – so we need to understand what happens when
we take that energy out of the waves.
“ What impact does this have on our nearby shorelines and
how long does it take for those waves to recover to the shore?
How does it affect the marine environment and things like fish
spawning patterns? These are the questions we are aiming to
answer, in addition to how much power can be generated from
* Satellite Sollutions
* Marine Audio/Visual
* Marine Navigation
* Marine Communication
* Solar Systems
* Wind Systems
* LED Lighting
* IP/Thermal Cameras
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Key players in the ocean renewable energy sector have met
at the Australian Maritime College, a specialist institute of the
University of Tasmania, to observe a world-first trial testing the
performance and impact of wave energy farms at model scale.
A number of wave energy devices will be grouped together in
an array for a series of experiments under various wave conditions
in the model test basin during the six-week trial.
The project is a collaboration between AMC and Swinburne
University of Technology with industry partners BioPower Systems
Pty Ltd and Carnegie Wave Energy, and supported by funding
from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).
Swinburne University of Technology project lead, Associate
Professor Richard Manasseh, said the information gleaned
from these experiments would be used to develop a free online
modelling tool to assess the ocean wave energy resource in a
“ This research will give industry and investors an impartial
assessment of the performance of wave energy farms and provide
greater confidence when negotiating large developments. It may
also uncover the best arrangements for the devices to provide
optimum performance,” Associate Professor Manasseh said.
ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the meeting provided an
overview of the projects, identify links and explore opportunities
for them to work together in the future.
“ Wave arrays enable economies of scale, so determining
how devices interact in the ocean will be crucial to the
Harnessing the potential of wave energy farms
The devices were tested under a range of wave conditions generated within the model test basin. The set-up employed UV lighting to
monitor the wave patterns that were generated on the near surface. The model wave energy device is located beneath the surface.
Dr Mark Hemer (CSIRO), Associate
Professor Richard Manasseh (Swinburne
University of Technology) and Associate
Professor Irene Penesis (Australian
Maritime College) in the model test basin
with a wave energy device model.
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