Testing To Continue Off The New Hampshire Coast This Summer
Oscilla Power, Inc. (OPI) announced that it has successfully completed a field trial of its wave energy technology in Lake Washington. Deployed in early January in the northern part of the lake, two of OPI’s wave power harvesters operated continuously for nine weeks, generating electricity under winter storm wave conditions. This was the first time that OPI’s patented technology, which is ultimately intended for use in energy generation applications in coastal areas, was tested in uncontrolled conditions. The field trial was jointly supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Oscilla Power and the Applied Physics Laboratory at the University of Washington (APL-UW).
“The power generator performed exactly as we expected, demonstrating a very high correlation between the actual output and the output we predicted based on the wave conditions,” said Chief Executive Officer Rahul Shendure. “Winter storms on the lake offered ideal conditions for a first trial, giving us a great foundation for our ocean testing off the New Hampshire coast this summer.”
Enabled by its iMEC™ technology platform, OPI’s wave energy harvester uses readily available and low-cost magnetostrictive alloys to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy without moving parts. The harvester will use a highly scalable and modular architecture to deliver utility-scale power that is cost competitive with coal or natural gas.
“We were excited to help with the deployment here in Seattle,” said Jim Thomson, Principal Oceanographer at APL-UW and Assistant Professor of Environmental Fluid Mechanics in UW’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. “In addition to its potential to be a game-changer for ocean renewable energy, OPI’s technology could bring reliable power to remote oceanographic buoys, dramatically reducing the cost of collecting this important data.”
The system deployed in Lake Washington will undergo further testing in May at the U.S. Department of Interior’s Ohmsett test facility in New Jersey, followed by a summer deployment at the Isle of Shoals, NH test site operated by the University of New Hampshire’s Center for Ocean Renewable Energy. The National Science Foundation and U.S. Department of Energy have provided funding for these programs.