UK Oysters Could Be Tapped to Generate Electricity

oyster wave power photo

Of all the ways of generating power from renewable sources, using the ocean has got to have more variations than any other power source. One new method being investigated by Queen’s University Belfast and Aquamarine Power Limited has been dubbed the Oyster. The research collaboration is scheduled to last for the next five years, with the first prototype of the Oyster being deployed off the coast of Orkney in the summer of 2009. This is how it works:Water Pumped to Shore to Turn Turbine
As Aquamarine Power describes it,

The system consists of a simple steel Oscillating Wave Surge Converter, or pump, fitted with double acting water pistons, deployed near-shore in depths around 10-12m. Each passing wave activates the pump; which delivers high pressure water via a sub-sea pipeline to the shore. Onshore, high-pressure water is converted to electrical power using proven, conventional hydro-electric generators. The nearshore location is easy to access; and the most complex part of the system is onshore, so it is accessible 365 days a year.

oyster wave power device image

Aquamarine says that the peak power generated by the Oyster is 300-600 kw, depending on configuration and location. If multiple Oyster units are deployed in an array, they would be configured to pump into a single onshore hydroelectric generator.

via: Renewable Energy World
images: Aquamarine Power Ltd
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