The US Department of Energy (DOE) has chosen 20 teams to participate in the second phase of its Wave Energy Prize fund.
The US Department of Energy has chosen 20 teams to participate in the second phase of its Wave Energy Prize fund. The 20 teams were selected from a field of 92 registered participants and will continue in the competition to win a prize purse totalling more than $2m.
The design-build-test contest aims to encourage the development of wave energy conversion devices that will achieve the DOE’s goal of doubling energy captured and reducing the cost of wave energy.
A panel of expert judges identified the qualified teams based upon the quality of their technical submissions, ‘technology gate 1’, which described their concepts in detail. Among other requirements, qualified teams will now build a 1/50th scale model and will participate in small-scale tank testing as a means of validating their concepts.
Finalist teams, which are scheduled to be announced in March 2016, will be selected based upon the requirements of the Prize’s ‘technology gate 2’. These teams will have the opportunity to receive seed funding to build their 1/20th scale WEC prototypes, which are scheduled to undergo tank testing at the nation’s most advanced wave-making facility, the Naval Surface Warfare Center’s Manoeuvring and Seakeeping (MASK) Basin at Carderock, Md., beginning in the summer of 2016.
"We’re excited to see how these 20 devices perform during the small-scale testing, and we’re hopeful many will demonstrate a capability to achieve the DOE’s goal of doubling the cost effectiveness of energy capture from ocean waves," said Phil Michael, technical expert at Ricardo, Inc. "The field of registered teams was very strong, and there are many teams that had great ideas but were not able to advance to the next round."