The open ocean conditions found in Orkney can now be replicated at FloWave test tank as a result of a three-year research collaboration between the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) and FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility.
After three years of work by Sam Draycott, a Research Engineer working at FloWave, and the support of the highly experienced team at EMEC, FloWave can now accurately replicate individual project site locations within the tank, FloWave informed.
Making full use of both the 10-year plus data-set from EMEC’s Billia Croo offshore test site and the multi-directional wave and current capability of the 25 meter FloWave circular test tank, the new technique has already been trialled and tested by engineering consultants Quoceant, a company with experience in testing in real wave climates, and at Billia Croo in particular.
Richard Yemm, Founding Director of Quoceant, said: “From our experience testing real machines at EMEC we know first-hand that most test tanks just cannot produce sea conditions like those found in an open ocean site. The circular tank now operating at FloWave allows much better emulation of real conditions and it was exciting to test in storm waves that actually occurred on the EMEC site.”
Stuart Brown, FloWave’s CEO, added: “This brings enormous benefit for developers in terms of anticipation of, and preparation for, the challenging complexities of deployment the real marine environment, and I am really proud of Sam and the team at FloWave for achieving this major step-change in test tank capability alongside our regular work-stream of carrying out test campaigns for commercial and academic users.”
FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility is owned by the University of Edinburgh, and is designed for academic research into wave and tidal current interactions.