Buoys CETO by Carnegie: renewable power from ocean’s waves.
The Australian company Carnegie has announced the world’s first grid connection of its CETO operating system of marine swell.
Source : perthnow.com.au
If wave energy, suggests very promising production expectations (the energy potential is estimated at more than 100 gigawatts in the world), its development faces many technical obstacles and exploitation was limited until now to research project in France, Scotland, Wales or Australia. It’s precisely in Australia that the launch of the first wave farm connected to a national grid was made official. A world first for Carnegie Wages Energy company which exploits that installation and wants to accelerate its future development.
A WORLD FIRST. Based on submarines electricity generators, CETO 5 technology developed by Carnegie offers via the exploitation of perpetual motion of the waves, a constant source of renewable energy. The system is based on the submerged buoy and connected to the underwater pump units. Moving according to the movement of waves, buoys create a hydraulic pressure converted to electrical power in a power plant ashore. The regularity of the waves, compared to the intermittency of wind and solar energies dependent on weather conditions, can provide a reliable and stable energy production throughout the year. With a capacity of one megawatt, enough to provide the equivalent of the electricity consumption of about 2,000 Australian homes, the project CETO 5 is intended to supply with renewable energy Australia’s largest naval base (HMAS Stirling) on island “Garden Island” to five kilometres off Perth, capital of Western Australia.
The Western Australia region was not chosen by coincidence; it presents a significant wave generation potential. “Our wave resource in Western Australia is the best in the world, and theoretically the resource that hits our coastline every day could supply ten times the entire state,” said Michael Ottaviano, president of the Carnegie Wages Energy group.
WHAT NEXT? CETO 5 project is the result of ten years of research and testing conducted more than $100 million in investments and funded with the help of the federal government of the State of Western Australia and the Australian Association for renewable energies. The first production unit with a capacity of 240 kilowatts has already operated for more than 2000 hours of experimental activity. If only three buoys are currently in operation, much bigger wave farms are now conceivable.
As Michael Ottaviano said, “The main thing is that we now know that it works. The challenge from now is above all a question of scale and cost. This system still relatively expensive and cannot be profitable without the creation of economies of scale and commercial development of this technology. If you build a coal power plant of only one megawatt, its electricity will be the most expensive in the world produced from this fossil fuel. Likewise with wave energy, we need to develop technology and make possible the construction of 20 megawatts, 50 megawatts, 100, 200 megawatts buoys and thus we can offer more competitive prices”.
In this context, and if the CETO 5 project remains a pilot project, the Australian company is already working on the next generation of underwater generator model. The Carnegie CETO 6 should offer a production capacity four times higher, an increased efficiency and reduced production costs.