The Wave Energy Group on the Division of Marine Technology on the Department of Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, develops simulation models for structural integrity analysis of mooring lines and umbilical cables used in wave energy converter (WEC) systems.

The main purpose of the work is to achieve structurally safe solutions with as low LCOE as possible.

HOLISTIC SIMULATION MODEL The Swedish Energy Agency has supported the group in a number of projects to develop a holistic model suitable for parametric studies of specific WEC system components such as the mooring lines and the umbilical cable (dynamic cable) between the WEC buoy and a power-collecting hub. The simulation model is used to assess a WEC system’s performance during various operation conditions (wind, sea-state, ocean current, biofouling), to maximise the energy harvesting and to minimise the maintenanc an the LCOE.

MOORING LINES AND DYNAMIC CABLES ARRAY SYSTEMS These system components are critical for a WEC system’s performance and functionality. The group works in

cooperation with among others Waves4Power AB and CorPower Ocean AB on the assessment of mooring solutions and materials and with NKT Cables AB on the development of the next generation of dynamic cables designed for the maritime environment. A new novel cable simulation model is under development which should be used for detailed design and analysis of a cable’s mechanical life and ensure no loss of electrical conductivity. Mechanical testing is carried out in cooperation with RISE Research Institutes of Sweden.

Large scale harvesting of wave energy requires array systems of wave buoys. Different types of array system solutions are studied, assessed and optimised using the holistic simulation model. Each array system is evaluated with regard to LCOE, LCA and risk analysis.

MODEL AND FULL SCALE EXPERIMENTS, ELASTIC MOORINGS AND ARRAY SYSTEMS The simulation model has been validated against model scale experiments (1:20 and 1:36) in an ocean basin. In an ongoing project funded by the Swedish Energy Agency, it is used to assess and improve the performance of Waves4Power’s WaveEL wave buoy which is installed outside Runde in Norway.

The group is one of the partners in the OCEANERA-NET project

ELASTMOOR led by Instituto Superior Técnico in Lisbon, Portugal. The project emphasis is on comparing elastic mooring systems for WEC systems and developing simulation models for their assessment. The WaveEL wave buoy is one of the demonstration cases.

Chalmers University of Technology Division of Marine Technology 27

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