Finavera prepares to deploy prototype wave unit in Oregon

Finavera Renewables Inc. said Aug. 30 it would deploy its second-generation AquaBuOY wave energy converter in the first week of September off the coast of Newport, Ore.

Deployment of the test unit depended on weather conditions and could take place over several days, the company said.

Oregon Iron Works in Portland, Ore., fabricated the AquaBuOY 2.0 wave energy converter. (HNN 7/3/07) The unit is not designated for a specific power project, but results of the test will be used to design equipment for Finavera’s proposed 1-MW Makah Bay Offshore Wave Energy pilot project (No. 12751) in Washington.

Once the unit is deployed two miles off the coast of Newport, Finavera will monitor the output of its hose pump technology and other components to determine its generating potential. All on-board diagnostic equipment will be powered by the device itself, with solar panels and small wind turbines providing secondary power.

�The testing will lead to the development of our next generation wave energy converter, as our goal is to optimize our technology for cost-effective electricity generation from the energy of the ocean,� Finavera Chief Executive Officer Jason Bak said. �The completion of construction and imminent deployment bring us closer to that goal.�

The device to be tested is �open loop� in the sense that sea water will be pumped through the device by the movement of a piston and hose tube assembly. By contrast, the AquaBuOY that will be deployed for Makah Bay will be �closed loop,� using only fresh water inside a closed hollow cylinder mounted to the body of the buoy, and not sea water, to generate electricity.

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