Why Wave Power

The Stable Energy Source

Wave Energy, like wind and solar, has its origin in the free renewable energy continuously received from the sun. Wave energy is unique because it is the most concentrated form of renewable energy on earth, with power density much higher than that of wind and solar energy. Not to mention, it is also more predictable and consistent than wind or solar. Sea states can be accurately predicted 48 to 72 hours in advance, while accurate wind forecasts rarely are available more than 5-7 hours ahead.

Waves are created when wind moves over the ocean surface. Even small ripples on the ocean surface give the wind an opportunity to off load some of its energy onto the waves, causing the waves to grow bigger as the wind impacts it over long distances (called a fetch). The longer the fetch and the stronger the wind, the bigger the waves. As waves can travel for hundreds and even thousands of kilometers with virtually no loss of energy, they act as an energy reservoir charged by the wind.

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Resource Potential

With 2/3 of the earth’s surface covered in water, ocean waves represent our planet’s last untapped natural renewable energy resource. The waves hold tremendous amounts of energy – we only need to tap into it.

According to the IEA-OES, Annual report in 2007, it is estimated that 80,000TWh of electricity per year can potentially be captured from ocean waves – sufficient to meet our global energy demand five times over.

If we can use only a minor part of this potential, it would be a great leap for mankind, especially considering that the vast majority of the world population lives in close proximity to coastlines.

Future targets for Europe (European Commission figures)
2050 = 15% from Marine Energy
2080 = 50% from Marine Energy

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