SPOTLIGHT ON SWEDEN
Synective is a partner in the Offshore West network and will be engaged in the RiaSoRII project together with other European players. Their focus is aimed towards creating a reliability framework for conditional monitoring of wave power units
BACKGROUND The company’s background is from automotive, defence and high-tech industry which served as a competence platform in achievements to support the needs of this exciting clean energy arena.
In the high technology industry, advanced sensor and camera systems is increasingly important for complex monitoring, active security, autonomous driving and other applications. Development of these products requires test systems and infrastructure to collect sensor data to train, evaluate and demonstrate algorithms, for instance for object classification. System authentication with Hardware-in-the-
FEATURE SPONSOR NEXT GENERATION DATA ACQUISITION SYSTEM
Loop is another important part of many projects.
APPROPRIATE INPUT DATA Training and self-learning systems require appropriate input data. Hence during the development of such a system there is a need for communication with the surrounding environment through its sensors and interfaces. A vision system for vehicles typically obtain data from cameras, radar, lidar over communication buses such as CAN, FlexRay, and Automotive Ethernet. The data needs to be recorded with high
precision and bandwidth and reproduced while relationships between the different data streams are maintained.
DEVELOPING SYSTEMS Synective Labs have significant experience in developing such systems for the automotive industry. Based on these experiences, they are developing the next generation data acquisition system (DART).
THE NEXT GENERATION OF CABLES
NKT (formerly NKT cables) is one of Europe’s largest cable manufacturers, with a strong history of innovation Today, they are developing a new generation of cables to service the unique requirements of wave and tidal energy by working with Swedish technology developers CorPower, Minesto and Waves4Power. Irrespective of the principle used to convert waves or tides into electrical energy, power cables play a vital role in getting that energy to shore so it can generate revenue. Finding the optimal way to achieve this is both complex and necessary for the developers of ocean energy projects.
CENTRAL FOCUS For more than 125 years, innovation and technology development has been a central focus of NKT’s. The Danish company now also aims to support the transition to more sustainable forms of energy. Today, they are bringing their experience and expertise to bear on the challenge of developing optimal cable
solutions for ocean energy, through a collaborative industry/research project. The project centres around the energy generating technologies of Waves4Power, CorPower and Minesto, three ocean energy technology developers with completely different energy capture concepts. The developers are support by the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) and Chalmers University.
SERVICE-FREE OPERATION The project will develop cables for connecting the energy convertors to a central collection hub, as well as high voltage cables from the hub to the shore. The aim of the project is to offer cables that will last for 20-25 years of service free operation.
RISE and Chalmers University have developed a mathematical model for 1kv power cables to simulate cable movements and calculate fatigue failure through the project. The model can be calibrated using different prototype cables that are produced by NKT and tested in six-month field trials.
FIRST FIELD TRIAL
The first field trial is now underway at Waves4Power demonstration site in Runde, Norway. The second trial will take place alongside CorPower’s deployment at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Scotland later this year. Following the trials, models will be validated against data collected by monitoring equipment mounted on the wave energy convertors and on the cable itself. The project has had to overcome the considerable challenges associated with using such monitoring equipment in a harsh marine environment.
Based on the model and field trials, the
project will develop a method of accelerated fatigue testing in a laboratory environment which will evaluate different cable designs – an important tool for the ocean energy industry.
SYSTEM DESCRIPTION DART has a modular architecture including a configurable motherboard and separate interface card tailored to the sources to be recorded. The motherboard is based on programmable circuits, called SoC FPGA’s, allowing low latency and flexible performance. The devices programmability also enables easy modification to customise the interface to any set of sensors and system buses.
By combining Synective Labs’ expertise in image processing with FPGA’s and their extensive experience in development of rapid real-time systems in areas such as automotive, finance and defence, they have been able to create DART. This datalogger is versatile and has a small form factor, low power, flexible feeding, passive cooling and can efficiently be adapted to each project’s needs.
SPOTLIGHT ON SWEDEN
DEVELOPING THE FUTURE OF WAVEFARM INFRASTRUCTURE
Ocean Harvesting Technologies (OHT) are not your average wave energy technology developer: “We know a lot about wave energy conversion from ten years of development, spanning across the whole system from wave energy converter to grid integration. But what we are focused on is array infrastructure, power take-off and how energy storage technologies can be used in different places in the system to reduce cost without degrading the power capture performance,” explains CEO Mikael Sidenmark.
Flexible power production plant Mikael launched OHT in 2007 to develop a wave energy converter (WEC) with a weight suspended in a winch to smooth power. Today, this gravitational energy storage device is found on a central platform to smooth captured power from an array of WEC´s and
provides short term time shifting and grid storage services. “Our technology turns a wavefarm into a flexible power production plant, capable of revenue stacking from a variety of grid services to the real time market,” Mikael explained.
Over the past years, OHT has been working with Sigma Energy and Marine (SEM) on system integration and design for a 10MW demonstration array with hydraulic collection of power from the WEC´s to a central platform. SEM originates from Aker Solutions, offering specialist engineering services for the offshore oil & gas industry.
OHT is also working with Bosch Rexroth on hydraulic systems integrated with the WEC and the collection tower. The radial piston motor technology offered by Bosch Rexroth is key to making this hydraulic link between WEC´s and the central platform viable: “The system design process has helped bring in the right supply chain partners and replace custom solutions with proven technologies, a crucial step in the innovation process to de-risk and reduce cost,” added Mikael.
EXCITING NEW OPTIONS This process has opened up exciting new options for Ocean Harvesting. For example, the storage capacity in the central platform can now be up-scaled considerably as a result of the system design process, Mikael further explained: “We started with an idea of a 70 metre high wind turbine foundation with a 500 ton weight suspended in a custom gear rack inside. We are now using a jack-up platform design with the accumulator mass integrated in a rack leg. Existing jack-up platforms can hold up to 15,000 ton variable load elevated 200 metres above the seabed, which could store 8MWh of energy.”
With the system design phase now completed, the next development stage is to build a 100kW dry test-rig of the central collection platform and gravitational energy storage device. This will be followed by sea trials of a small array of WEC´s connected to the same platform at an offshore test site.
Ocean Harvesting Technologies
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