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Landscaping Studies

Structural Materials, Coatings and Manufacturing Processes - Landscaping Study


  • Project Lead

    Wave Energy Scotland Ltd

  • Author

    University of Edinburgh

  • Date

    July 2016

Prior to issuing technology development calls, Wave Energy Scotland carries out landscaping studies to identify the state of the art for the selected technology development areas. This landscaping study investigates the materials and production processes available, or potentially available, for wave energy converter (WEC) device structural design and in particular the transferability of existing knowledge and capability from other industrial applications.

The starting point for this report was to establish the basis for the evaluation of materials, coatings and manufacturing processes and to also seek an industry wide perspective on the critical challenges that the wave energy sector faces with respect to materials technologies. A generic environmental specification was written that provides a consistent and concise reference of typical environmental conditions to which WEC materials are exposed. A reference set of typical structural loads was also compiled to provide indicative loading scenarios that are likely to influence the material selection and design of WEC structures.

Information gathered during industry interviews, combined with the existing knowledge of the project team, was used to generate a prioritized set of Materials Problem Statements related to Wave Energy Converter Development. These being Construction Cost, Articulation systems, Environment and Performance. Each of these areas was further broken into sub-problems and these are defined in more detailed in the report.

The report then identifies, evaluates and down-selects technologies with the potential to meet the requirements of each sub-problem. Each of the down selected technologies is subject to investigation to determine the state of the art, advantages and disadvantages of each technology area, availability of technology transfer from other industries, maturity and risk, cost drivers, and possible economic benefits of each.

The report concludes with the selection of 8 material areas which have the potential to meet the requirements for use in the construction of WEC or WEC sub-components within 3 years.

The study was led by the University of Edinburgh, with partners RiserTec Ltd, Pelagic Innovation and 38techinsight.

Project Keywords: Landscaping, Composites, Concrete, Dielectric Elastomer Generator, Elastomer, Hybrid, Steel, Corrosion, Fabrication, Fatigue, CAPEX

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