Author: Michael Raftery

SurfWEC Alternate Configuration #1

  The patented SurfWEC variable-depth platform (US Patent 8093736 B2 enabling the Shoaling Feature and Storm Load Avoidance Feature) is applicable to other generic WEC concepts including flapper/surge devices. Economic analysis of traditional bottom-mounted flapper/surge devices drives the existing designs into the boutique power generation realm rather than the sustainable energy triad. This is a… Read more »

Replacing Fossil Fuels with Ocean Wave Power

Wave energy converter (WEC) systems have not yet made it to the stage of development of wind and solar renewable power systems, but wind-generated waves are a concentrated form of wind power covering over 70% of Earth and present a fascinating opportunity for the future of sustainable energy and power systems. Figure 1. Point-Absorber Configuration of… Read more »

How Can We Stabilize the Power Industry in the United States?

Daily power plant operations in the United States are often taken for granted. Most people are not aware that the wholesale/industrial rate for electricty is updated every fifteen minutes and frequently varies from highs near $0.30/kWh ($300/MWh) to lows near $0.03/kWh ($30/MWH) throughout the day. Regional transmission operators (RTOs), companies such as PJM in the… Read more »

So What Does It Mean to have a 1000MW Wave Farm Offshore?

Scale is a difficult concept when novel technologies are being introduced, especially when it comes to marine renewable energy projects. Let’s assume we are talking about a 1000 Megawatt wave farm. It is quite interesting to visualize such a farm off the coast of New Jersey (see Figure 1).   Figure 1. A visualized 1000MW… Read more »

Tales From A “Hard Hat” Diver

While diving in an undisclosed location in the Fall of 1990, I experienced my first visceral encounter with exponential decay and exponential increase in wave energy as a function of depth. The gear I was wearing on my back was: US Divers/Conshelf XIV First and Second stage SCUBA regulators connected to a US Divers twin… Read more »