Characterization of a Feasibility Space for a New Technology – A Case Study of Wave Energy in Southern Brazil

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Author(s): Alexandre Beluco, Jones Silva*.

Journal Name: Current Alternative Energy


Background: Currently there are several renewable resources in different stages of technological maturation. Among different alternatives, wave energy has some initiatives at an advanced stage of development and is one of the most promising alternatives. In the process of developing wave energy conversion devices, as well as developing other alternatives, the limits that must be satisfied to achieve feasibility would be a powerful tool for technology managers. Method: This paper proposes a feasibility space as being the set of key parameter values for technical and economic viability that must be satisfied by devices in development. This article also determines the feasibility space that must be satisfied in the current moment by devices for converting wave energy to the feasibility of a wave power plant in the southernmost coast of Brazil. Results: The results indicate that, for the conditions considered in the simulations, wave power plants will be feasible, for energy at USD$ 0.05 / kWh, USD$ 0.10 / kWh and USD$ 0.15 / kWh, if they can be implemented with costs between USD$ 616.01 / kW and USD$ 2,865.37 / kW respectively for efficiencies between 20% and 40%. These values are extremely low, comparable to values for already mature alternatives such as hydropower and wind energy. Conclusion: The definition of a viability space allows the establishment of an objective to be achieved so that generating plants based on renewable resources not yet exploited can become viable. This paper presented the feasibility space for the generation of energy from ocean waves on the southern coast of Brazil.

Keywords: feasibility space, ocean wave energy, hybrid systems, southern Brazil, computational simulation, software Homer

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(E-pub Ahead of Print)
DOI: 10.2174/1570178615666180830102336

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