The LEANCON Wave Energy Device
The LEANCON Wave Energy Device (WEC) is designed in a way so that the imposed forces from the waves is minimized, and at the same time an optimal energy absorption is achieved. It is especially the wave loads in extreme situations that has been minimized, as it is the daily days waves that creates the income, but it is the loads in the extreme situations that decide how strong the device shall be build, and thereby how costly it is to build.
In normal working conditions the LEANCON Wave Energy Device typically stretches over two wave lengths and uses the vacuum forces from the downgoing waves to be kept down. Hereby it can be designed very light, but still under consideration of calculated and meassured imposed loads. In extreme wave situations some valve settings is changed whereby the tubes is filled with air and the relative light WEC floats high in the waves. Hereby the WEC's contact with the waves is very little and the loads is minimized.
Right from the beginning production technology has been build into the design, so that a WEC has been created that is relative easy to manufacture with the present production technology. The present scale 1:10 WEC and the comming scale 1:4 WEC's has been manufactured and shall be manufactured with the in the wind turbine business well known vacuum infusion technology.
Wave energy has globaly been a long time on the way. But like it 20 years ago was difficult to imagine wind turbines very much larger than 1 MW, it is the same technological developement in the wind turbine business that now has made it possible to achieve a break through for a WEC of The LEANCON Wave Energy Device type. It is this rapid progress in the developement of composite materials, advanced production technologies, FEM programs that gives a better understanding of the material loads and minimizing of material consumption, that now has made it possible to build cost effective wave energy devices.
In The LEANCON Wave Energy Device there is no moving parts beneath water surface and no moving parts is exposed to big forces. The infact only moving parts, besides the turbines and generators, is the valves above the tubes. Theese are some relative simple valves, where a huge air flow is running through but the valves is exposed to a relative low air pressure.
A commercial WEC will consist of 8 turbine- and generator units. Should one or two of theese fail, then the others to a certain degree will take over. Only a minor production loss will occur in case of failure in one of these functions. In this way maintenance and repair can be planned more efficient and be carried out on the most favourable time. The WEC's simplicity and redundante systems will give some low service and maintenance costs.
In the scale 1:10 project there has been designed and build a multi 360 degrees cable anchoring system, that secure that the WEC can turn freely around the anchoring point, even though it is conected to land by an electrical sea cable.
To the first tests a standard fast rotating aksial turbine will be used. There has been developed and tested a special displacement turbine, that has a very high efficiency over a wide working area. This turbine will not be used to begin with, to avoid a test in the test.
The WEC's that in the future will be manufactured by serial production is characterized in a way that a very high degree of automatisation can be achieved, as this WEC in contrast to wind turbine blades, doesn't has any double curved surfaces. Beside the in the wind turbine industry well known automation technologies, it will be possible to develope pultrusion technologies and other technologies to this concept that will reduce manufacturing costs. This will secure a cost efficient manufacturing, even in countries with a high salary cost.
The following technological issues characterizes this WEC:
The following other technological issues is covered by this project:
The LEANCON Wave Energy Device Advanced in a simple way