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Developments in the design of the PS Frog MK5 Wave Energy Converter.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date1/01/2006
JournalRenewable Energy
Journal number2
Volume31
Number of pages11
Pages141-151
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper describes one of the innovative wave energy converters under development by the Lancaster University Renewable Energy Group. An offshore point-absorber wave energy converter, PS Frog Mk 5 consists of a large buoyant paddle with an integral ballasted ‘handle’ hanging below it. The waves act on the blade of the paddle and the ballast beneath provides the necessary reaction. When the WEC is pitching, power is extracted by partially resisting the sliding of a power-take-off mass, which moves in guides above sea level. Totally enclosed in a steel hull, with no external moving parts, PS Frog Mk. 5 is at least as robust as a ship and the survivability of the device is currently under investigation, though such work is beyond the scope of this paper. Such a device could be very economic in terms of power output per unit of capital cost. New inventive steps with experimental results and computer studies have led to promising improvements to the hull shape. The WEC is maintained in a resonant state by the use of special means to maintain a high dynamic magnifier in irregular seas. A robust feedback control system has been developed to ensure stability and maintain efficient power take-off. Some of these developments are described and illustrated with the results of computer simulations that show power outputs and device motion over a range of conditions. It is shown that useful advances have been made, with the power capture bordering on 2 MW in an increasing proportion of sea states.

Bibliographic note

This paper presents an innovative wave energy converter PS Frog Mark 5 that was selected and invited by the Carbon Trust to participate in its Marine Energy Challenge (CTC 601 report 2006 ""Future Marine Energy). This involved eight International wave energy device developers (four UK, two from EU and two from USA). PS Frog was the only University based participant to be invited from this worldwide selection. RAE_import_type : Journal article RAE_uoa_type : General Engineering