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  • Funding programme and call:
    OCEANERA-NET Joint Call 2016 /Topic 5: Demonstration and validation of technological developments
  • Start date:
  • End date:
  • Duration:
    24 Months
  • Total budget:
    825.407,21 €
  • Budget for PLOCAN:
    96.213,00 €
  • Funding for PLOCAN:
    553.579,77 €
  • Total funding:
    68.737,25 €
  • Coordinator:
    INEGI (PT)
  • Partners:

Sustainable Energy at Sea Ports

In Wave Energy - Technology Brief (June 2014), the International Renewable Energy Agency stated that synergies with other offshore industries would be advantageous to the wave energy industry. The report concludes that opportunities should be found to create more dedicated infrastructures – including ports – to support the installation, operation and maintenance of wave energy converters (WEC). Additionally, the progressive growth of the sea ports’ activity brings many challenges, namely the increase of the energy consumption and pollution. The implementation of WECs in sea ports, allows preparing these important infrastructures for the future throughout sustainable and environmentally friendly developments.

Seaports breakwaters are designed to withstand wave action and promote the dissipation of wave energy at the entrance of the seaport, creating sheltered conditions for port activities. The high potential of these structures for the integration of WECs, due to their high exposure to ocean waves, triggered the SE@PORTS project. This project intends to demonstrate this approach is a win-win solution for both breakwaters and WEC solutions in a large extent. WECs current applications onshore are either based on the oscillating water column (Pico Island-PT and MutrikuSP, approaching TRL8) or on the overtopping principle (SSG at TRL3/4). These proof-of-concept prototypes, installed in real environments for validation purposes, still lack an integrated, multipurpose-driven assessment aimed at maximizing its technology efficiency, power production, long-term reliability and minimizing visual impacts or the overall construction.

The integration of high potential, overtopping concepts (TRL3) in breakwaters of large ports will be studied by means of numerical (WP3) and physical (WP4) modelling. In order to improve the system overall performance, hybrid systems combining overtopping with other working principles to harness wave energy will be analysed to explore the potential of this original approach. Potentiality of WEC’s application in seaports will be economically evaluated (WP5).

To realize SE@PORTS ambition, it is necessary to characterize the casestudy sites (WP2): (i) the offshore wave conditions, (ii) wave conditions at the toe of the breakwater, (iii) wave energy in front of the WEC. As case studies sites, the Port of Leixões (Porto, Portugal) and Port of Las Palmas (Gran Canaria, Spain) are suggested. Several concepts will be numerically studied in order to: (i) study its hydrodynamic behaviour, (ii) define the best design for the foundations, (iii) combine different approaches of harnessing wave energy, (iv) define which PTO suits better the power generation, (v) establish control strategies to be applied, (vi) explore the integration of storage systems and, finally, (vii) measure both the effectiveness and efficiency, taking into account Lean Principles by apply Lean Design-foreXcellence (LDfX) tool. Then, the most promising concept will be physically studied in both sites at different scales. Dissemination (WP6) will be organised around Research activities. The outcome of these activities will be published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at international conferences. At the beginning of the project the TRL will be 3 and in the end of the project we expect to reach the TRL 4-5 with the full set of laboratory tests of the reduced-scale models.