ERDF LandscapeParticular note is made of the contribution of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Marine-I, whose contribution has enabled Phase 2 to be undertaken.

 

The engineering, construction, installation and detailed test program of AMOG's WEC technology demonstrator device in a coastal wave environment - First Power Achieved.

Phase 2 of the project has just been completed. The scaled technology demonstrator aimed to show the AMOG WEC technology at a larger pre-commercial scale, and in an ocean environment, and focused on design, engineering, and fabrication. 

More specifically, it aimed to:

  • Demonstrate power generation in the targeted wave periods at low wave heights (where the test device is predicted to be most efficient)
  • Demonstrate power generation at longer wave periods in both low and high wave heights (where the test device is subjected to larger incident wave energy); and
  • Demonstrate the ability to transition between survival and operational modes.

The scaled WEC was ocean field tested at FaBTest in Cornwall, UK, in the European summer of 2019 and used a basic and robust manifestation of the Power Take Off (PTO) system for the purpose of the trials. A more sophisticated PTO is still under development for the commercial scale WEC devices. AMOG's WEC demonstrator was SOLAS compliant and met all of the FaBTest guidelines as a necessary precondition for test deployment. The WEC and its mooring system were designed to be compliant with DNV’s renewable energy codes and recommended practice.

During the test period, when conditions were not suitable for the technology demonstrator to be running, the WEC was maintained in a survival state (capable of riding out the 20-year storm). The device was able to be left in the survival state in between tests, where it could remain unsupervised; transitioning between modes and not anticipated to require external intervention due to a full telemetry and control system.

Below is an outline of some of the key milestones achieved over this Phase of testing:

AMOG Tank Testing Demo Day

AMOG, Marine-i and University of Plymouth hosted a collaborative industry event, the "AMOG Tank Testing Demo Day" in April providing attendees with a unique opportunity to see scale wave testing in action on the live commercial project.

Fabrication

After the detailed design and specifications were determined by AMOG, Mainstay Marine Solutions (Pembrokeshire, Wales) successfully won the tender to undertake the fabrication of the device, which commenced in June 2019. Fabrication remained on schedule and included the painting, electrical fit out and conduct of factory acceptance testing. 

Hull Launch

In July, the lower section of the AMOG WEC was launched into the sea from Mainstay Marine Solutions' slipway at Pembrokeshire, Wales UK, with the topsides planned for integration wiht the floating lower section, quayside, the following week. Work also continued on the final integration of the electrical and telemetry systems, and the final details of the wet tow were planned; to take the WEC from Wales to the FaBTest site at Falmouth, Cornwall. The installation contractor, KML (Keynvor Morlift Ltd), are preparing works associated with the WEC mooring installation, the power cable project and the WEC hookup.

Topsides Installed

Following the successful hull test launch, the AMOG WEC was berthed quayside to enable ongoing electrical integration work, and to finalise Factory Acceptance Tests (FATs), System Integration Tests (SITs), and commissioning tests. We will then undertake the wet tow from MainStay's fabrication site in Wales to the FabTest facility in Cornwall.

Tow

Using a purpose design bridle, with the mooring installation was completed, the topsides on, and systems and electrical integration tests complete, the full 30 hour wet tow of the WEC device, from Mainstay Matine Solutions in Wales (where it was fabricated) to the FaBTest site in Falmouth, Cornwall, was undertaken in early August.

First Power

On the 15th of August 2019 the AMOG WEC produced first power.

After a number of challenges were overcome, including some extreme weather conditions, the pendulum was set swinging in the waves and measured power was produced. Members of the AMOG UK team, supported by sub-contractors, were on hand to celebrate, acknowledging that the generation of first power from the device was the culmination of thousands of hours of wave energy research, hydrodynamic analysis, structural design, hull fabrication, and electrical integration work. In the words of Peter Mazurenko, on the ground AMOG UK engineer, "It was testament to AMOG that the mechanical and electrical design worked as intended first time round."

The AMOG WEC is named

AMOG's CEO, Ben Clark, formally announced that the AMOG WEC technology demonstrator, moored off the coast of Falmouth, was been named the AEP, in memory of Professor Andrew E Potts. Prof Potts founded AMOG in 1991 and was the company's CEO when he passed away unexpectedly in March this year. A driver of engineering innovation, he was a strident champion for the AMOG WEC project and therefore it was most fitting that the vessel bore his name.

Receptions and Information Sessions

September saw a couple of key recpetions hosted in both Cornwall and London, to both celebrate the successful tests, to date, and to provide project stakeholders and other parties with information on the project.

Ongoing Monitoring and Testing

In early October, favourable sea states saw the WEC continue to generate power. In addition, as part of the overall RD&I program, a pair of instrumented dynamic power cables were installed from the WEC; one cable wrapped in AMOG's low drag LGS technology; the other a bare cable to enable comparative results.

The position of the WEC was continuously monitored in real time using AMOG's Smart Mooring Integrity Checker (SMIC). SMIC used a live data feed from sensors on board the vessel to provide real time feedback on the mooring integrity of the device, and enabled this data to be viewed from anywhere in the world.

End of Phase 2 Testing

In mid-October, the AMOG WEC has reached the end of its testing phase with the AEP disconnected from her moorings and towed back to safe harbour. Over the coming weeks, the team at AMOG will be analysing the data obtained during the deployment, and determining both the ability of our numerical tools to accurately predict the performance of the device, and, by extrapolation, the expected performance of full scale versions. This information will then be used to refine economic models and assess the financial viability of the technology as a whole.

 

For more information on the AMOG WEC, please contact AMOG directly on +61 3 9542 3700.

 

Additional Notes:

Also wholly owned by AMOG Holdings Pty Ltd, AMOG Technologies has engaged AMOG Pty Ltd (AMOG Consulting) to undertake the design elements for the WEC. AMOG Technologies has also engaged with university partners such as the University of Exeter, the University of Plymouth, and AMC at the University of Tasmania (UTAS).

 

Media enquiries may be referred to AMOG's marketing and corporate communications manager, Melaina Oldham.