A patented near-shore wave energy conversion system with unique buoyant wings each coupled to a seawater pump that anchors the assembly to the seabed. The long axis of the pontoon automatically aligns itself with the crest of oncoming waves, irrespective of the wave direction. The seawater piston pump is unlike any other in that it discharges pressurized seawater through a hollow rod to a collection main located on the sea bed. The buoyant wings are actively controlled responding to changing sea conditions on a wave by wave basis.
SurfPower operating in 8 meter waves showing above surface and underwater views.
Pressurized seawater delivered by a number of buoyant wings is collected by a seabed main and delivered onshore to operate a conventional pelton turbine generator set delivering electrical energy directly to the grid.
Installations normally have 10 -15 pontoon/pump assemblies. This number of units is required to provide a constant flow (pulsation-free) of hydraulic energy to the onshore pelton turbine generator and thereby maximize the utilization of onshore generating equipment. Systems can be created with rated capacities from 3 - 50 MW. Each buoyant wing delivers 300 kW to the grid when operating in waves 4 meters and higher.
SurfPower configurations require a minimum number of components in the water and all electrical power related components are shore based allowing easy maintenance access and use "off the self" low cost components.
SurfPower is deployed in relatively shallow water (20-40 meter depth) and the low profile buoyant wings (about 1 meter high) will be invisible from the shore most of the time. When the pontoon is active the upper surface is essentially flush with the surface of the waves.
When a client requires reverse osmosis desalinated water, a portion of the generated water flow can be directed to a reverse osmosis desalination plant, eliminating the need for pre-filter and membrane pressurization pumps and the associated cost of energy required to operate them.
Development of SurfPower does not require the creation of new technical devices. Design and construction of buoyant wings, piston pumps and marine pipelines are all well established technologies. Pelton turbine generator sets are available from a number of international suppliers.