Physical modelling of an offshore OWC wave energy converter mounted on a windmill monopile foundation
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In recent years, with the progress of offshore wind technology, the possibility of integrating other marine renewables with offshore windmills has arisen. Hybrid, or multiplatform, solutions leading to economies in the construction and installation of the devices and a lesser occupation of marine space are sought. In particular, this research deals with a hybrid system that integrates an Oscillating Water Column (OWC) device into the typical monopile foundation of an offshore windmill. A prototype and a model of the hybrid energy converter have been proposed. Furthermore, an experimental set-up was designed, built and tested at the wave flume of the University of Santiago de Compostela (USC). The Air pressure inside the chamber and the air-flux at the orifice are the main parameters that define the OWC performance. The first was directly measured and the air-flux was determined by the free surface level inside the chamber. Furthermore, the influence of the turbine damping on the OWC performance was studied considering different turbine specifications. Finally the proof of concept of this new wave energy converter has been successfully carried out.
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