Wave energy converter arrays: Motion response of inter-connected array
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© 2019 Taylor & Francis Group, London. Compact wave energy converter (WEC) arrays are a promising option in terms of opti-mizing energy output per unit area of marine space, realizing synergies in O&M tasks and auxiliary installations (substations, export cables, etc.), and achieving economies of scale. Four different levels of connectivity between five OWC spar buoys in a compact array—corresponding to as many mooring configurations—were tested in the Ocean Basin at the University of Plymouth. We find considerable implications of the inter-connectivity on the frequency of heave motion response, with interconnected cases yielding a higher natural frequency and an increase in magnitude compared to the baseline (non-connected) arrangement. This indicates the importance of a holistic inter-connected system design approach required in the early design stages with respect to the wave climate at the deployment site. For instance, for a site off Leixões (Portugal), the frequency upshift obtained through inter-connectivity may be beneficial.
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