Wave energy has a great potential as renewable source of electricity. Studies have demonstrated that significant percentage of world electricity could be produced by Wave Energy Converters (WECs). However electricity generation from waves still lacks of spreading because the combination of harsh environment and form of energy makes the technical development of cost effective WECs particularly difficult.
The aim of the RealTide project is to identify main failure causes of tidal turbines at sea and to provide a step change in the design of key components, namely the blades and power take-off systems, adapting them more accurately to the complex environmental tidal conditions. Advanced monitoring systems will be integrated with these identified sub-systems and together with maintenance strategies will be implemented at outset from the design stage to achieve an increased reliability and improved performance over the full tidal turbine life.
The integration of a greater proportion of renewable energy, compounded by the rise in small scale distributed generation, is making it increasingly difficult to balance demand and supply of electricity without adequate energy storage facilities. However, the effective deployment of these solutions at any particular location will require an understanding of the local energy system at the time. Conversion between energy vectors will also be required not just to meet storage needs, but also to allow major shifts from fossil fuels to low carbon energy in applications like heat and transport. Hydrogen is an energy vector that is particularly versatile from this viewpoint.
The Structural Design of Wave Energy Devices project (SDWED) 2010-2014 is an international research alliance supported by the Danish Council for Strategic Research. The project is a five-year endeavour to harness the energy potential in wave energy at competitive costs.
UKCMER is the third phase of EPSRC investment in collaborative wave and tidal energy research. Edinburgh has led all three phases since 2003. There are 13 partner universities in the Centre working together on 15 projects. They work together to ensure joined-up regional, disciplinary and thematic effort to help meet the challenges in accelerating deployment towards and through 2020 targets
Established in September 2013 and funded for four years, TEDDINET is a research network examining the interactions of people with digital technologies and the potential for smart metering to transform energy demand in the home and at work. TEDDINET’s primary purpose is to create added value and enhance the impact of 22 individual research projects funded under the ‘Transforming Energy Demand through Digital Innovation’ (TEDDI) and ‘Transforming Energy Demand in Buildings through Digital Innovation’ (BuildTEDDI) programmes. Sponsored by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), these 22 projects encompass 26 (UK) universities, 75 partners from industry and the housing sector, and over 200 researchers from engineering, informatics, design and social sciences.
A full tidal array has not been installed anywhere, commercially to date. A number of the leading turbine manufacturers have part or full scale working prototypes which are under-going testing in various sites the majority of which are enclosed in semi-test environments. In order to move this nascent technology into the commercial arena and expedite market deployment, it is necessary to establish an array of turbines in one site to verify the performance capability and environmental characteristics of a full array.
TROPOS is a European collaborative project funded by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme for Research and Development, more specifically under the "Ocean of Tomorrow" call OCEAN 2011.1 – Multi-use offshore platforms. The TROPOS Project aims at developing a floating modular multi-use platform system for use in deep waters, with an initial geographic focus on the Mediterranean, Tropical and Sub-Tropical regions, but designed to be flexible enough so as to not be limited in geographic scope.
Scotland has substantial wave and tidal energy resources and is at the forefront of the development of marine renewable technologies and ocean energy exploitation. The next phase will see these wave and tidal devices deployed in arrays, with many sites being developed. Although developers have entered into agreements with The Crown Estate for seabed leases, all projects remain subject to licensing requirements under the Marine Scotland Act (2010).