Category Ocean Energy

Does the CEO Get a Pass?

Charlier asked ten years ago whether tidal power had come of age (Charlier and Justus 1993); one may query whether, in general, does Conversion of the Energy from the Ocean get a pass? It is remarkable that the problem of tapping ocean energies remains resilient for so long. The matter bounces back periodically. Yet, positive action is limited.

Had there been such hesitation about railroads and aviation where would we be?

It took more than 150 years to finally decide to construct the Rance River plant; prior to this historic move of Charles de Gaulle, ailing tidemills were dying off, among others a timid tidal power plant had briefly functioned in Boston Harbor, another in Great Britain, still another in what is now Suriname, and, loudly heralded attempts on the US and French coasts aborte...

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An attempt at defining the viability of tidal energy generated power was made as recently as 2005 (Wood), however the rise in oil prices has not been fully taken in account and a revised schedule is timely.

The European Commission funded CAOC[194] which put in place funding and a platform enabling devices developers, wave and tidal energy researchers, and standard agencies to share information and knowledge that will facilitate the transi­tion of wave and tidal energy from an energy research technology to one approach­ing commercial competitiveness with a medium-term time frame (Johnstone et al. 2006).

The role of hydropower for developing countries is repeatedly emphasized. Small scale operations of tidal currents will furthermore bring electricity to remote loca­tions...

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New Technologies

A new perspective is perhaps added to utilization of tidal stream (current) by Mueller and Baker (2005) in their analysis of conversion to electricity of energy produced by marine energy converters, using direct drive electrical power take-off (cf. 7.14 p. 138). Taking into account the electrical properties of the topologies of these ma­chines, problems of sealing, lubrication and corrosion were studied.

Even though 2006 dated information pertaining to tidal energy use in Russia indicates a current disinterest, Usachev et al. published in 2004 both a review of its large-scale use and the observations made over 35 years of operation of the Kislaya Bay TPP. The TPP has operated successfully, with moving parts underwater, under extreme climatic conditions...

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Public Acceptance

To reduce emissions the UN Development Program, but also the Royal Dutch Shell Company long range planners, suggest the use of renewable energies. The price of these, however, must be made competitive with that of conventional fuels. Be it mentioned here that the steady rising cost of oil, automatically contributes at nar­rowing the price gap. Another condition is that means be found to secure systems’ reliability, as intermittent resources, such as tidal power among others, expand into the daily load mix. And there is a psychological factor as well, linked to the final recognition by governments—particularly the US—to wit acceptance by the public at large and the governments’ willingness to address the problem of climate change.

The World Energy Council sees excellent opportuniti...

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Innovations and New Thoughts

Although some authors had expected a resurgence of interest in TPPs (Wilson 1983) after completion of the Annapolis-Royal (Nova Scotia) plant, there was no sudden take-off. Neither did the in depth study of a Severn potential TPP, the feasibility studies for a Garolim TPP (Republic of Korea) and for a Gulf of Kutch (India) plant. It was about the time that a last major discussion of the Chausey Islands Plant (France) found its way in print (Banal 1982, Bonnefille 1982).

Among proposed innovations for TPP schemes, the HVDC[184] bus “comprising transmission lines and converter sub-stations” could be used to “connect tidal power sources and tie interconnected IEPS[185] of the Russian Far East and Siberia” (Belyaev 2002, 2003).

In China the technology of the LonWorks Fieldbus digital c...

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Climate Alteration and Energy Shortage

Global warming and high oil prices have renewed interest in sustainable energy, with solar, wind, biomass, hydrogen fuel cells, tidal and wave power getting most attention.

But researchers in Norway and the Netherlands, known for their water tech­nology know-how, say there is room for other alternatives given the world’s ever­growing appetite for energy.[183]

If climate change and the high cost of oil are powerful incentives to search for or develop other methods to generate power, the possible exhaustion of that fossil fuel is an equally strong motive, albeit on the longer term...

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Re-Timing, Self-Timing

Generating cycles for TPP-s may be self-scheduling so as to take the greatest possi­ble advantage from selling the electricity. The optimisation problem—mix-integer and linear—was solved using commercially available software by de la Torre.[182]

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Requirements and aims of turbines for TPPs have changed and bulb, Straflo, Darrieus and other turbines may, in some cases yield their place to other types of turbines. In an effort to reduce research costs, Japanese engineers have examined the possibility of converting turbines designed for tapping wave power into turbines for tidal power.[177] The research was done from the viewpoint of enlarging the pos­sibilities of using tidal power there where only extra-low head is available and the time-varying energy density characteristics are a problem. Reciprocating turbines (impulse and Wells-turbines designed for wave power, cross-flow type Darrieus tur­bine) were focused for extra-low head tidal power. Similarly gas (petroleum) know­how can be put to use in TPP technology.[178]

A straight ...

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