Wave Swell Energy

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neverfail
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Wave Swell Energy

Post by neverfail » Fri Jul 17, 2020 6:27 pm

Innovative Australian made wave energy technology is set to be trialled for the first time in the ocean off King Island, Tasmania, where it will be integrated with existing wind, diesel and solar resources – a first in Australia.

https://reneweconomy.com.au/wave-swell- ... 0Australia.
The potential of this is huge.

It does not appear on all maps, but the ocean gap seperating the island continents of Australia and Antarctica is usually dubbed The Southern Ocean out here. This name also extends westward to include the ocean between the tip of South Africa and adjacent Antarctica coastline along with New Zealand and Antarctica to the east.

What it means is that there is a water gap running clear around the Earth from approximately latitudes 40 degrees south of the equator to the Antarctic circle (at 66 degrees south). The only impediment being the "tail" part of the South American continent (Patagonia) which comes to within a few hundred kilometers of meeting up with the Antarctic peninsula narrowing the sea gap copnsiderably. It means however that for almost the entire way around the earth at those southern latitudes there is nothing but ocean and therefotre no impediment to the blowing of the oceanic winds.

It is the roughest body of water in the world in terms of the size and persistent movement of the ocean swell - which is pushed along constantly by the prevailing west to east oceanic wind pattern. Waves can get so high they can apparently capsize a vessel the size of an aircraft carrier.

The only reason why you do not have an identical wind pattern prevailing in the Northern Hemisphere is because up there the same latitudes north (approx. 40 to 66 degrees) are occupied by land - most notably the giant Eurasia and North American landmasses - leaving little space inbetween for intervening stretches of ocean. With that not a lot of potential for oceanic winds to build up at those latitides north before these disippate and expend themselves by blowing up against an adjacent continental landmass.

Which brings me back to that generator off King Island. As those west-east wages "scrape" past the southern edge of continental Australia (the longest stretch of coastline facing the Southern Ocean) the "drag" effect tends to divert the part of the waves closest to land around into a south-north trajectory with the effrect that they crash on to the beaches and against the sea cliffs that line the southerrn edge of Australia.

Imagine if a line of these power generating devices (much enlarged) were to be placed along the southern coastline of Australia in the path of these incoming waves. It would generate enough electrical power to electrify the whole of Australia along with likely a surplus to export abroad.

An objection to solar power is that it does not work when the sun is shining and to wind turbine is that they go dead when the wind is not blowing. But that Southern Ocean swell runs constantly so if harnessed to generate electrical power there would be no interruption - a singular advantage over all other known forms of renewable energy.

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dagbay
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Re: Wave Swell Energy

Post by dagbay » Sat Jul 18, 2020 9:25 am

This is a good method for energy production and is similar to wave energy harvest and swell energy harvest which are used for beacons and monitoring boyes.
How harmful will they be to fish and other ocean creatures remains to be seen.
I'd rather be diving or flying alas for now I am on terra firma.

neverfail
Posts: 5590
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2016 3:47 am
Location: Singapore

Re: Wave Swell Energy

Post by neverfail » Sat Jul 18, 2020 2:49 pm

dagbay wrote:
Sat Jul 18, 2020 9:25 am
This is a good method for energy production and is similar to wave energy harvest and swell energy harvest which are used for beacons and monitoring boyes.
How harmful will they be to fish and other ocean creatures remains to be seen.
thanks Dagbay. :D

As long as they install mesh grids at the intake entrances to prevent sea fauna and seaweed getting in to clog the interior (I am sure that they will) then all should be well.

At present there is great interest in private enterprise investment in renewables here in Australia; with most of the money going into solar panel farms. A combination of local factors seem to have promped the boom:

1) Electric power retail costs are high making competitive alternative sources potentially lucrative.

2) Our fossil fuel power plants are ageing, being decommissioned and no new ones being built to replace them.

3) Australia, by virtue of being the World's most arid continent (ignoring Antarctica) is also the most sunlit.

4) The southern regions of Australia are considered among the world's windiest.

5) There is plenty of cheap, sparsely populated (or unpopulated) land out here to cover with solar farms.

The only problem I forsee with the sea wave production of energy is that these other renewables will likely have cornered the local electric power market before they can get started: making the production of additional energy from this source potentially unprofitable - except for an overseas market. Perhaps using the electric power to extract hydrogen from sea water then liquifying it (as they do now with natural gas) for export to energy importing countries abroad like Japan and South Korea may be the solution?

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