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Techno-Economic Related Metrics for a Wave Energy Converters Feasibility Assessment

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Original languageEnglish
Article number1109
JournalSustainability
Volume8
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Oct 2016

Abstract

When designing “multi-MW arrays” of Wave Energy Converters (WECs), having a low number of converters with high individual power ratings can be beneficial as the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) costs may be reduced. However, having converters of small dimensions or small power ratings could also be beneficial, as suggested by previous works, due to a reduction in material costs as compared to power production, and the use of small, inexpensive vessels. In this work, a case study investigating the optimum size of WEC for a 20 MW array is performed. Analysis is carried out based on the CorPower Ocean technology. In this case study, firstly a Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) model is created. This model incorporates the latest Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) estimates for CorPower Ocean’s 250 kW prototype. Using this techno-economic model, several sizes/ratings of WEC are tested for use in a 20 MW array. Operational Expenditure (OPEX) is calculated using two different calculation approaches in order to check its influence on final indicators. OPEX is firstly calculated as a percentage of CAPEX, as shown in previous works, and secondly using a failure-repair model, taking into account individual failures of WECs in the array. Size/rating analysis is carried out for several European locations in order to establish any dependence between site location and optimal WEC size/rating. Several metrics for techno-economic assessment of marine energy converters, other than LCOE, are compared in this work. A comparison of several devices with each these metrics is performed within this study

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