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Wave power 'cheaper than fossil fuels'

 
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monster



Joined: 11 Jun 2006
Posts: 137
Location: Brighton

PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:22 pm    Post subject: Wave power 'cheaper than fossil fuels' Reply with quote

Ecotricity have recently announced investment in a new UK invented device - The Searaser.

It pumps sea water up into a reservoir, which is then released to power a turbine when power is needed.

Ecotricity claim it will overcome the two major downsides of renewables, variable output and cost - claiming it will produce electricity cheaper than any other renewable and possibly cheaper than fossil fuels....

A commercial device should be up and running by 2014

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-devon-16676818


http://www.ecotricity.co.uk/our-green-energy/our-green-electricity/and-the-sea/searaser
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Potemkin Villager



Joined: 14 Mar 2006
Posts: 779
Location: Narnia

PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Wave power 'cheaper than fossil fuels' Reply with quote

monster wrote:


Ecotricity claim it will overcome the two major downsides of renewables, variable output and cost - claiming it will produce electricity cheaper than any other renewable and possibly cheaper than fossil fuels....



Wow it sounds incredible! Laughing Laughing Laughing
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6208
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have my doubts about the viability of this, but it is undeniably possible unlike the various free energy and perpeptual motion scams.

Being able to store the water and release it times of peak demand is certainly attractive, but a "swiming pool" sized reservoir at 25 meters above sea level does not actually contain very much energy.

Anything larger would run into endless nimbyfests.

I would think twice about putting large reservoirs of water near cliff edges, they are prone to collpase especialy under significant extra loading. Putting it well back from the edge would add to costs, and perhaps require wayleaves over other peoples property.

The main drawback of wave power is that the machinery has to withstand the worst likely winter storms, and yet still be affordable and also able to extract energy under more moderate conditions.
A number of sample, prototype, or trial installations have succembed to the destructive effects of winter storms.
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Potemkin Villager



Joined: 14 Mar 2006
Posts: 779
Location: Narnia

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

adam2 wrote:


The main drawback of wave power is that the machinery has to withstand the worst likely winter storms, and yet still be affordable and also able to extract energy under more moderate conditions.
A number of sample, prototype, or trial installations have succembed to the destructive effects of winter storms.


I would say virtually every wave energy scheme has either not stood up to Atlantic conditions or has very seriously underperformed predicted performance (e.g. Islay). I had a chance to examine and discuss several scale off shore prototypes with experienced nautical folk at a conference on Orkney some years ago and the opinion was :-

Too flimsy
Far, far too complex
Virtually unserviceable in situ

The promoters of these devices came across rather like religious zealots
of a perculiar King Canute sect.

I agree with all the points made. What really gets me steamed up with
these misleading PR puffs is that they are so patently lies, albeit of a largely self delusional variety. They also serve to entice in folk with more money than sense. Apart from anything else wave energy is severely attenuated at the small distances off shore suggested in the diagram.

Ignoring everything else a renewable generating scheme that is (expensive and unproven) renewable energy plus something else (pumped storage = additional costa and losses) cannot possibly "produce electricity cheaper than any other renewable " unless it is endowed with Harry Potter like magical attributes. Rolling Eyes




[img]www.toonpool.com/.../ king_canute_443255.jpgπ[/img][/img][/code]
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