Oregon State University

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Event Details

PhD Oral Preliminary Examination – Ratanak So

Monday, May 23, 2016 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Novel Power Optimization Simulations for Power Take-Off Integrated Wave Energy Converters
When the term renewable energy is mentioned in a conversation, wind, solar, and hydro energy typically come to mind. However, there is one major resource that has mostly remained untapped until now, wave energy. Wind and solar power technologies are well established around the world but they cannot generate electricity all the time; wind is not always blowing and the sun is not always shining. In other words, they are less predictable compared to waves.

Another fact is that water is much denser (about 800 times) compared to air, so it can carry more energy than wind per volume. A meter wide of incident wave front can provide about 40 kW along the coast of Oregon or Washington which can power about 20 homes. 50 km of coastline translates to 2GW of capacity (1 million homes) which is equivalent to a typical hydroelectric power plant in the U.S.

In recent years, Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have jointly developed an open-source wave energy converter code known as WEC-Sim (Wave Energy Converter-Simulator); capable of simulating WECs of arbitrary device geometry subject to operational waves. The author contributed heavily to PTO-Sim (Power Take-Off-Simulator), which adds additional PTO modeling capability to WEC-Sim.

This research proposes control strategies called Control-Sim (Control-Simulator), which integrates PTO-Sim with traditional and advanced control techniques capable of significantly improving power production from wave energy conversion. A proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller and a model predictive controller (MPC) will be designed for both hydraulic power take-off and direct drive linear generator.

Major Advisor: Ted Brekken
Committee: Annette von Jouanne
Committee: Julia Zhang
Committee: Eduardo Cotilla-Sanchez
GCR: Janet Nishihara

Kelley Engineering Center (campus map)
Nicole Thompson
1 541 737 3617
Nicole.Thompson at oregonstate.edu
Sch Elect Engr/Comp Sci
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