Perth wave plant takes shape

OE Staff
Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Australian marine renewables firm Carnegie Wave Energy is to start pipeline laying this week on its Perth Project, offshore Garden Island, Western Australia, following completion of offshore foundation installation activities.

The Perth Wave Energy Project (PWEP) will be the first commercial-scale grid-connected wave energy project and desalination plant to use Carnegie’s CETO wave energy technology.

PWEP will involve the installation and operation of four to eight submerged CETO units attached to the sea floor. These are connected to two small diameter pipelines, laid on the seabed and trenched through the immediate shoreline, that run back to a shore-based power generation facility located within a pre-disturbed and disused quarry on Garden Island.

Work on subsea drilling and installation of pile type foundations for the project started in December, using the foundation installation vessel Endeavour (previously named the Eunsung 1200), operated by Fugro Seacore (pictured above).

Geotechnical conditions, and suitability of the pile design and the installation approach were confirmed and the subsea drilling and installation of all pile type foundations was completed over the past weekend.

The CETO system operates under water, away from storms and invisible from the shore. Fully submerged buoys are tethered to seabed pump units. These buoys move with the motion of the passing waves and drive the pumps. The pumps pressurize water which is delivered onshore via a subsea pipe.

Onshore, high-pressure water is used to drive hydroelectric turbines, generating zero-emission electricity. The high-pressure water can also be used to supply a reverse osmosis desalination plant, replacing or reducing reliance on greenhouse gas-emitting, electrically-driven pumps usually required for such plants.

The technology is also capable of generating power offshore should the specific characteristics of a project site require it.

PWEP is supported by AUD$13.1m in Australian Government funding through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s Emerging Renewables Program.

PWEP is supported by $7.3 million from the Government of Western Australia's Low Emissions Energy Development (LEED) Fund. This is part of a larger $10 million LEED grant, awarded to Carnegie by the Western Australian Government, to support the development of the CETO technology from concept through to completion of PWEP.

The desalination pilot is supported by a $1.27m AusIndustry grant from the Clean Technology Innovation Program.

Categories: Subsea Renewables Installation

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