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Challenges of using electroactive polymers in large scale wave energy converters

Challenges of using electroactive polymers in large scale wave energy converters
Challenges of using electroactive polymers in large scale wave energy converters
Electroactive polymers, or EAP, are a class of materials that change their shape when excited by an electric field. Main focus of research is currently the application of EAP as artificial muscles, where they convert electrical energy into motion. Conversely, they can also be used to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. This paper describes the concept of a prototype wave energy converter, which is currently developed at SBM offshore in Monaco. The standing wave tube EAP wave energy converter is set to float under the ocean surface, where the system amplifies pressure waves similar to a travelling wave tube. No mechanical parts are used to convert the ocean waves into electrical energy; instead EAP is utilized to directly convert the pressure change into electricity. The whole system consists of EAP ring generators, which are distributed along a flexible, elastomeric tube. Since there are no rotating parts or pumps involved, no maintenance is required and the converter can run until failure to maximize return of investments. The flexible nature of the system poses unique challenges to the material design, especially since the system is supposed to be operated at field strengths above 50 V/µm in order to maximize the energy gained.
978-1-4673-1251-6
786-789
Andritsch, T.
8681e640-e584-424e-a1f1-0d8b713de01c
Morshuis, P.H.F.
59248480-efdb-444e-b3f5-b39a3355315a
Smit, J.J.
21d902fe-6d70-4dff-ad29-3eb8146c0ea5
Jean, P.
c1b63d78-30d0-4323-8b07-a9ece02f4026
van Kessel, R.
65919b49-a273-4847-8518-88a6d5c56a29
Wattez, A.
7777227d-6810-4c05-845d-5c9c3baa2b90
Fourmon, A.
d62a2fde-8834-47cb-8812-c3f17587c164
Andritsch, T.
8681e640-e584-424e-a1f1-0d8b713de01c
Morshuis, P.H.F.
59248480-efdb-444e-b3f5-b39a3355315a
Smit, J.J.
21d902fe-6d70-4dff-ad29-3eb8146c0ea5
Jean, P.
c1b63d78-30d0-4323-8b07-a9ece02f4026
van Kessel, R.
65919b49-a273-4847-8518-88a6d5c56a29
Wattez, A.
7777227d-6810-4c05-845d-5c9c3baa2b90
Fourmon, A.
d62a2fde-8834-47cb-8812-c3f17587c164

Andritsch, T., Morshuis, P.H.F., Smit, J.J., Jean, P., van Kessel, R., Wattez, A. and Fourmon, A. (2012) Challenges of using electroactive polymers in large scale wave energy converters. 2012 Annual Report Conference on Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenomena (CEIDP), Canada. 14 - 17 Oct 2012. pp. 786-789 . (doi:10.1109/CEIDP.2012.6378898).

Record type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

Abstract

Electroactive polymers, or EAP, are a class of materials that change their shape when excited by an electric field. Main focus of research is currently the application of EAP as artificial muscles, where they convert electrical energy into motion. Conversely, they can also be used to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. This paper describes the concept of a prototype wave energy converter, which is currently developed at SBM offshore in Monaco. The standing wave tube EAP wave energy converter is set to float under the ocean surface, where the system amplifies pressure waves similar to a travelling wave tube. No mechanical parts are used to convert the ocean waves into electrical energy; instead EAP is utilized to directly convert the pressure change into electricity. The whole system consists of EAP ring generators, which are distributed along a flexible, elastomeric tube. Since there are no rotating parts or pumps involved, no maintenance is required and the converter can run until failure to maximize return of investments. The flexible nature of the system poses unique challenges to the material design, especially since the system is supposed to be operated at field strengths above 50 V/µm in order to maximize the energy gained.

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More information

Published date: October 2012
Venue - Dates: 2012 Annual Report Conference on Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenomena (CEIDP), Canada, 2012-10-14 - 2012-10-17
Organisations: EEE

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 354477
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/354477
ISBN: 978-1-4673-1251-6
PURE UUID: c60d206f-4573-44dd-8e6c-e0a27c1ba402
ORCID for T. Andritsch: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3462-022X

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 30 Jul 2013 13:39
Last modified: 19 Nov 2019 01:36

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