Two of the world’s top sea-energy test centres say they have successfully replicated the wild ocean environment of Orkney in Edinburgh.
The project, a collaboration between the European Marine Energy Centre (Emec) in Orkney and Edinburgh University’s FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility began in 2012 with the aim of substantially improving the accuracy of mimicking open sea conditions in a tank.
FloWave is home to an 82ft circular tank which is said it be the only facility of its kind in the world.
After three years of work by research engineer Sam Draycott, with the support of Emec, FloWave said yesterday it could now accurately replicate individual locations to “a level of sophistication and complexity not possible anywhere else”.
The new technique has already been trialled and tested by engineering consultants Quoceant, which has significant experience in testing in real wave climates, and at Billia Croo in Orkney.
Emec managing director Neil Kermode said: “FloWave has done a great job at integrating our data into their test tank, and I’m delighted to hear that Quoceant has been able to trial this.
“The open ocean is an expensive place for developers to learn hard lessons so realising the conditions experienced at Emec in a tank should help iron out some issues before they come to deploy at sea.
“Having established the tools and process with EMEC’s Billia Croo as a first example, FloWave now has the capability to work with appropriate data-sets from other project site locations around the world.”