Alternative Energy

Alternative Energy

Alternative energy news, and information about renewable energy technologies.

Feb 13

Aquamarine Power Makes Riding the Waves More Interesting

Posted in Energy Industry | Future Technology | Wave Power

Oyster Wave Energy Every time we turn around we are seeing something new and exciting in renewable energy forms and Aquamarine Power is the latest in a long line of energy sources to be pumped up about. Aquamarine Power is a company that is developing wave energy. This is a source of energy that has barely been tapped into and they are one of the leaders in developing it.

Their Oyster project has been stealing headlines for quite some time and it continues to be successful to this day. It officially launched in November of 2009 and was responsible for bringing this company into the limelight and winning them quite a bit of recognition. This particular project was so successful that Aquamarine Power has already received funding and is developing an Oyster 2 project.

What makes this very exciting is the fact that this is one type of renewable energy that can actually be predicted with regularity for all of eternity. Solar power requires the sun to be effective. While solar panels can still charge under clouds, they do not fully charge and every day that they go without direct sunlight means that they are not being fully charged.

Wind power obviously relies on the wind for all of its power. On a calm day, there would be no power to generate. This is why wind turbines are placed strategically in areas that always get wind. Even in those areas, there are days when the blades do nothing more than sit still for hours on end.

Wave energy is different because we know each and every day when high tide is and when low tide is. Because of this predictability, a hydro-electric wave energy converter like Oyster can be placed and will generate a predictable amount of energy every day. Add to the equation that the energy that is produced is cheaper than other renewable and we do indeed have a winner.

Solar power has definitely been stealing the headlines because of its attractiveness and portability. However, if projects like Oyster from Aquamarine Power continue to be successful, wave energy is going to start to become more and more feasible as an alternative energy source. It would actually enable areas around the world to come totally off of the grid and have energy that is supplied 100% from Mother Nature. While it is tough to say how much longer it will be until all these forms of renewable energy come to true fruition, projects like this would lead us to believe that this time will be sooner rather than later.

  • Jillian Wolf

    “Off the grid.” Does this mean that wave energy will be free to all, or will the same corporations that supply energy now be buying up seashores all over the world and recreating the grid? I’m beginning to think that we need to come together from around the world to agree that life supporting energy sources not be made available as profit-making ventures. Put money in the mix, and you can bet the oceans will suffer… along with what’s left of us.

  • Mike Maybury

    What we need is more action.
    Different trials, independently checked, should ensure that this source is developed efficiently.

  • Francisco A Roque

    Hope this project gets implemented in front of every place and city worldwide, that is to provide power to everybody minus the pollutants.

  • Tom Hirst

    There is no such thing as Free energy, who among us can reach into a pocket and remove millions of dollars. Research, especially for new and unproven technology, doesn’t come cheap. Yes, solar power is readily available, wind power works with very expensive turbines, but the cost of these “energy converters” exceeds the payback when one figures in life cycle costs on top of initial construction and installation. For instance, I intend to run the diesel in my boat on used veggy oil, good cheap fuel source, right? Wrong, in order to merely store this aboard a heated tank,extra filtration, and a means of changing back to fuel oil before shutdown to avoid ruining the injector system due to solidified veggy fuel. Figured it out and that “free” fuel will cost a minimum of $2 per gallon. Still viable, but NOT free. Guess the point I’m trying to make is that while we all complain about large corporations, in reality they have the capitol, not us. Some one has to advance the initial investment and if the idea works a reasonable profit is expected by the guy supplying the money. Do you like to work for nothing? Yes, a lot of energy companies are very greedy, but their greed will cost them as new ideas become more viable due only to rising costs

  • Boneheaded1

    Wow. Jillian. What a great and idealistic statement. Now for those of us who actually have a grip on reality. This is great. Wave power should definitely be part of the mix. I had hopes for the Pelamis wave converter, and LIMPET’s work pretty well but are certainly site specific. But if it works, then, “Go Oyster.” People keep looking for that ONE thing that will replace fossil fuels. But it won’t be ONE thing. It will be everything we can think of working in unison. Also, a little conservation won’t hurt either.

  • G. Paul

    The concept of wave power is a critical technology that is capable of providing energy with a low carbon footprint. The power stored in the Ocean is enormous and this technology is a vital step in bringing it to the free market.

    It is important to support this type of technology and
    give it an opportunity to become competitive with more traditional energy sources.

  • slick

    Does this operate on wave power or tide power? According to the article, it is dependable because we get tides on a regular cycle, but according to the referenced website and the embedded movie, it is wave based, which means the power will come and go, just like wind power.

    It’s still helpful, of course, and sounds like they have some clever ideas on how to put more of the equipment on shore where maintenance is easier. Go team.

  • Robi

    The wave / tide energy device is a great idea and means to harness the Ocean’s power to generate electricity, with a low carbon footprint. You’ve all got good points including that it should be just 1 out of multiple energy sources like wind and solar, and of course it is not “free” energy. A form of competitive commercialized industry should help keep costs reasonable. The existing power companies could buy the electricity from different sources. The water rights as to whom, and which organizations, get the use of the water will be an interesting issue to handle; obviously whoever has the capital to get the programs going will need a return on their investment. If you put the Government completely in charge the overhead and hidden expense could get out of control. But the water rights issue would require some form of Government regulation and oversight.

    The start up cost will be high, however the return will provide a healthier environment for us all and less dependency on Coal or Nuclear power. The systems will obviously need on going maintenance with the harsh environment. Ensuring the systems are constructed of environmentally friendly materials will be a critical issue also. It’s a viable energy source; just do it! Hopefully they will be located in areas that will not interfere with Oil Tankers and cargo shipping lines, or fishing boat nets.

    The concept should be approached with an optimistic attitude, with sufficient transparency and accountability to the public.

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