STRUCTeam has supported the world’s leading wind turbine and blade manufacturers for over a decade. The engineering specialists are now extending their strategic insights to the application of composites in wave power with renewable company, Ocean Energy, and technical partners 3A Composites Core Materials and Sicomin.Ocean Energy approached STRUCTeam for support with a Horizon European Framework Programme, an EU funding initiative. The overarching objective of the proposal is to secure a sustainable and competitive energy supply through renewable applications. The proposition centers around the development of an Oscillating Water Column (OWC), named the ‘OE12 Buoy’. The wave energy convertor is designed to glide on the ocean surface and extract power from the motion of the water, this power is then converted into electricity.As the project has evolved, the desire to achieve weight savings in the steel structure’s design has become a key objective.Technical partners, 3A Composites Core Materials and Sicomin, have been invited by STRUCTeam to collaborate with the supply of recycled core materials and bio-based epoxy resins to facilitate the light weighting process.3A Composites Core Materials, part of the 3A Composites Group, has developed AIREX T92 and proposed it is used throughout the composite buoy. All parties anticipate a successful funding bid and look forward to developing the preliminary specifications of the composite structure. STRUCTeam will then initiate a pre-study analysis, conduct a first assessment, and finalize design requirements.The current OE 12 Buoy prototype is manufactured from steel and does not incorporate any composite materials. The device weighs twenty-eight tons and measures twelve meters by six meters. STRUCTeam estimates a 30-50% reduction in weight could be possible through careful engineering and materials selection.The benefits around weight reduction are clear and convincing. A lighter structure allows for simplified transportation and installation, and in turn, lowers Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE). Environmental benefits of composites are also motivating factors such as the potential reduction in C02 emissions, improved materials circularity and durability.For identifying growth opportunities for Power Semiconductors in the Global Renewable Energy market report: Trends, Forecast and Competitive Analysis, please visit https://www.lucintel.com/power-semiconductors-in-renewable-energy-market.aspx
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