Written by Kara Sjostrom, ESLLC 2015-2016
Everyone loves renewable energy (if you do not count those who hate the earth). Not everyone is a fan of expensive energy though. This is one reason why a lot of people do not support wave energy, which creates energy at about 30 to 60 cents per kilowatt hour. The typical kilowatt hour in the United States costs 15 cents, but the good news is that a new type of wave energy creates energy at about 15 cents per kilowatt hour.
This new type of wave energy is a ship with arms that extend into the ocean, and at the end of the arms are buoys that stay afloat on top of the water. As the waves come into shore they roll and the buoy moves from the bottom of the wave to the top of the wave. As the buoy moves with the water the arm then moves and therefore mechanical energy is created. The ship has a capacity to hold 20 megawatt hours of energy.
This new type of wave energy is better than older system types for one huge reason, mobility. Most current systems are immobile and must be able to withstand storms. However, the new boats are mobile and are able to lift their arms and come into shore. The old systems also must transport their energy using underwater pipelines which have to meet certain standards, while with the new system the boats can come in when they fill their battery. Another reason why mobility is important is because it is necessary to have a spot off shore saved for the system. This means that boats are never allowed to sail in that spot ever again.