Tidal Energy: Opportunities and Challenges for Renewable Power Generation

DS 58-7: Proceedings of ICED 09, the 17th International Conference on Engineering Design, Vol. 7, Design for X / Design to X, Palo Alto, CA, USA, 24.-27.08.2009

Year: 2009
Editor: Norell Bergendahl, M.; Grimheden, M.; Leifer, L.; Skogstad, P.; Lindemann, U.
Author: Leary, Martin John; Hollier, Will; Subic, Aleksandar; Hayes, Adrian; Burvill, Colin
Section: Design for X, Design to X
Page(s): 357-


Diminishing fossil fuel reserves combined with concerns of environmental damage and climate change provide a strong motivation toward the development of practical and renewable energy sources. Of the available mix of renewable energy sources, tidal energy offers significant advantages. Tidal energy is highly predictable (unlike wind energy), is available night and day (unlike solar energy) and does not require expensive and environmentally damaging infrastructure (unlike hydroelectric energy). This paper examines tidal energy technology and its role as a renewable energy source. The particular opportunities and challenges associated with tidal energy are summarized to provide a template for further research. A novel hydrodynamic test facility has been developed to provide experimental evaluation of proposed theoretical models, and to assess the performance of proposed turbine systems. The test facility is fully instrumented and consists of a road-transportable, motorized pontoon.

Keywords: Tidal energy, design for environment hydrodynamic testing


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