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Systems and Methods for Wave Energy Conversion

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Background: This technology provides a low cost low maintenance solution for generating electricity from ocean waves. Its unique magnetic coupling system isolates all mechanical components from the harsh marine environment making it ideal for powering sensor arrays communication nodes or other applications within the coastal zone. The technology will help to break down multiple barriers (power and communication) and accelerate development of coastal sensor networks across multiple sectors (environment security commerce etc.) growing the market in the process. Once established as a reliable power source the technology can be scaled towards utility scale applications. Like most point absorber wave energy conversion (WEC) technologies the device of this invention uses a buoy following the up and down motion of passing ocean waves to capture energy from the wave and transfer it to the mechanical device. The most unique aspect of the system is a magnetic coupling device that allows the linear motion of the buoy to be translated through the central tube into the core mechanical system which allows the mechanical components to be completely isolated from the corrosive marine environment.

Technology Description: A prototype of the device has been built and dry testing has yielded a maximum power generation on the order of 100 Watts. Initial embodiments of the invention feature energy-generating devices that can be mounted to fixed infrastructure (docks piers etc.) in the coastal zone while second generation designs are under development in which WEC devices are implemented in a free-floating mode potentially at greater distances away from the shore. Among the benefits of this invention are low cost and low maintenance compared to existing devices and the novel design which protects the working parts from harsh marine environments.

Applications: Ocean wave energy


Generating electricity from ocean waves

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