Although wave energy has not yet achieved commercial stage, a very large number of Wave Energy Converters have already been tested at several scales, either in wave flumes, tanks or in sheltered ocean areas or lakes. As a consequence, a number of methods have been developed by the institutions responsible for the test facilities and by the technology developers themselves.
Targeting the completion of a MaRINET standard on the laboratory testing of wave energy converters, this intermediate report is a collation of the testing methods being used nowadays in the industry. This compilation of procedures will allow not only the future standard structure to be developed in the right direction, but also to raise a several issues that are not considered yet in current guidelines for the laboratory testing of WEC.
Questionnaires have been filled by WEC developers and Test facilities in order to compose this report that aims to lead future construction and test of WEC devices. An overall six WEC developers (Atgaris, Perpetuwave Power, Resen Waves, Wavedragon, Wello, and Columbia power) and six Test facilities (Aalborg Universitet, WavEC/Instituto Superior Técnico, Strathclyde University, Tecnalia Research & Innovation Foundation, Queen’s University Belfast, and Ecole Central de Nantes) contributed to this task.
Firstly, this report states the main methods and recommendations typically applied when designing and constructing WEC models. For this target a complete analysis of construction, buoyancy, ballasting, and anti-corrosion materials is carried out. Also an exhaustive scale study is presented, including construction accuracy, specific tests scaling, forces scaling, and other different scales effects.
Criteria typically applied when designing and constructing large WEC models tested outside tank facilities are also exposed. With this objective different areas as anti-fouling and marinisation, hazardous materials, certification and insurance, health and safety, transport, and environmental issues are studied.
As a summary of the collation of a WEC device a number of lessons learned and solutions applied when designing and constructing are presented, going throughout the following matters: design and planning, materials, components, instrumentation, and tests.
Finally, the main factors considered when designing and manufacturing a WEC device are exposed. Those factors considered and based on developers and test facilities previous experience, have been classified due to the large amount of random factors provided. This classification evolves different themes as PTO, scale, cost, survivability, tests and instrumentation, numerical modelling, safety and integrity, and general issues.