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Britain is building the largest wave power


Several wave energy conversion technologies into electricity going to experience Southwest Regional Development Agency (South West RDA). Despite being the “demo”, the station will provide the network to 20 megawatts, equivalent to the needs of several thousand households, and in the future plan to increase capacity.
Multimillion project Wave Hub (see also the article on the Wiki) is funded by the UK government funds, European funds and industrial companies. This station will be located in the sea off the coast of Cornwall, about 16 kilometers from the city of Hailey (Hayle).

The plan calls for an unusual pattern of development. Of South-West of England in the rental companies give “personal” sea pieces measuring 1 x 2 km. There industrialists to install a complex wave generators of different schemes, all with cables will be connected to the shore.

Only selected four partners, and everyone will be able to develop on the site of up to 5 megawatts.

First Wave Hub is based on the Power Buoy wave generator from a U.S. company Ocean Power Technologies (OPT), which has a branch in Britain. As is already clear from the title, Power Buoy works by vertical movement of a large (several meters) float, moving along the column, anchored at the bottom. (In the area of ​​the Wave Hub water depth is 50 meters.)

Near Haley Park OPT must deploy these generators with a capacity of 150 kilowatts each (PB150), but in the company’s portfolio has similar large model, which is also likely to go to Britain for testing.

Two other partners – is the Norwegian company Fred Olsen Renewables (about her work in the field of wave energy while little is known) and the Australian Oceanlinx. Participation Oceanlinx, however, is still in question.

But there is another notable member of Wave Hub. Project West Wave (a joint venture of British energy companies EON and Wind Prospect). He intends to use the technology from the Scottish company Polaris Wave Power – those “swinging snakes,” which became the basis for the world’s first commercial wave power station, opened in Portugal last year. Each “snake” allows up to 750 kilowatts of power.
Wave Hub wave to become the largest project in the world, with the South West RDA is going to develop in parallel and tidal stations in the region (in the estuary of the River Severn).

In scope of the upcoming construction of a Wave Hub in the world can compete only other British same project, developed close – in the Orkney Islands – under the auspices of the European Marine Energy Research Centre (European Marine Energy Centre – EMEC). There also will be tested on different types of wave power plants and from different companies.


Interestingly, some of them put their install both projects. So, E.ON with all the same, “snakes” of elemis participates in the program EMEC. OPT with its Power Buoy also stretched at two sites: in the center of the EMEC in Orkney, and the Wave Hub in Cornwall.

Scale building complexes EMEC and Wave Hub will unfold in the next year (although the first work will begin as early as this.) Wave Hub, in particular, plans to start the production of energy to consumers in 2010 or 2011. The nominal test project is planned for five years, but would extend the work and, most importantly, the expansion of the generators for a total capacity of 50 megawatts.
Coupled with the efforts of the Centre EMEC and its partners, as well – with a string of “tidal” projects, Britain is going to become a world leader in energy use of the sea.