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Wave-power extraction by a compact array of buoys

  • XAVIER GARNAUD (a1) and CHIANG C. MEI (a2)

Abstract

The majority of existing single-unit devices for extracting power from sea waves relies on resonance at the peak frequency of the incident wave spectrum. Such designs usually call for structural dimensions not too small compared to a typical wavelength and yield high efficiency only within a limited frequency band. A recent innovation in Norway departs from this norm by gathering many small buoys in a compact array. Each buoy is too small to be resonated in typical sea conditions. In this article a theoretical study is performed to evaluate this new design. Within the framework of linearization, we consider a periodic array of small buoys with similarly small separation compared to the typical wavelength. The method of homogenization (multiple scales) is used to derive the equations governing the macroscale behaviour of the entire array. These equations are then applied to energy extraction by an infinite strip of buoys, and by a circular array. In the latter case, advantages are found when compared to a single buoy of equal volume.

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Corresponding author

Email address for correspondence: ccmei@mit.edu

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Present address: Laboratoire d'Hydrodynamique – Ecole Polytechnique, 91128 Palaiseau, France

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References

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Wave-power extraction by a compact array of buoys

  • XAVIER GARNAUD (a1) and CHIANG C. MEI (a2)

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