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www.elsevier.com/locate/apor

José Perdigãoa, António Sarmentob,*

a

Institute for Systems, Informatics and Safety, Joint Research Centre, 21020 Ispra (VA), Italy

b

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Instituto Superior Técnico, Av. Rovisco Pais 1, 1049-001 Lisboa Codex, Portugal

Received 20 October 2001; accepted 24 September 2003

Abstract

It is shown that due to power take-off losses, optimal control provides maximum energy absorption, but not maximum energy production.

A new reactive control criterion in the frequency-domain is deduced assuming constant power take-off efficiency, respectively, in the power

feeding and power absorption parts of the wave cycle. If applied in the time-domain, this criterion requires the incident wave to be predicted

some time into the future. Whilst the OWC type of Wave Energy Converters (WEC) is presented in the paper, the extension to WECs of the

floating body type is also considered. Illustrative numerical results for a two-dimensional OWC of simple geometry are presented, which

include the performance of this device in three wave spectra with increasing demands of active control for improved energy production.

Linear hydrodynamic theory is considered throughout the paper.

q 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Keywords: Wave energy; Active control; Frequency-domain; OWC; Overall-efficiency; Power take-off losses; Floating devices

general, a non-zero phase-lag between the airflow and

After more than 20 years of R&D, wave energy is still not pressure difference in the turbine (the external force and the

competitive with other renewable forms of producing float velocity in the case of floating body WECs). This is

electrical energy. This is in general so, and in particular why optimal control has been referred to in the past as

applies to OWC plants, the most well studied wave energy phase-control. Thus during part of the wave cycle there is

device, of which a number of power plants have been built compression of the air flow—when the product of the air

around the world. To accomplish economic competitiveness flow and pressure difference is negative—which requires

the energy production must increase by a significant amount. energy to be supplied to the air. In the expansion phase of

This increase of energy production may result partially from the wave cycle—the product of airflow and pressure

higher incident wave energy fluxes existing in deep waters, difference is now positive—the compression-work is

more regular wave climates, or improved efficiency of the recovered, leading to maximum energy absorption. A

Wave Energy Converters (WECs) and better control similar situation occurs in floating body WECs, because

procedures. This paper addresses this last point through the force acting on the power take-off and the velocity of its

reactive control aiming at maximizing energy production. parts are not in phase.

Reactive control permits to control the amplitude and From the above it is concluded that in OWC devices a

phase of the radiated wave, thus allowing for a better special type of air-equipment has to be considered if optimal

interference with the diffracted wave for each frequency control is to be used, which can work either as a compressor

component, this leading to maximum wave energy absorp- or as a turbine. Such equipment can take the form of a

tion. The conditions to achieve maximum energy absorption variable pitch-angle turbine, such as the one proposed in

are well known for OWC devices [1] and floating bodies [2] Ref. [3]. A prototype of this turbine is now being built for

and the corresponding control is referred to as optimal the European Pilot Plant constructed at Pico Island in the

control. Azores.

The variable pitch-angle turbine, like any other power

* Corresponding author. Fax: þ 351-21-841-7398. take-off equipment for OWC or other wave energy

E-mail address: sarmento@hidro1.ist.utl.pt (A. Sarmento). devices, is not free of losses (aerodynamic and mechanical

0141-1187/$ - see front matter q 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

doi:10.1016/j.apor.2003.09.002

158 J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166

losses) to which electrical losses in the generator and amplitudes of the radiation flow and air pressure are related

other auxiliary equipment have to be added. These losses by the frequency-response function—also called radiation-

have to be added to the power delivered to the air in the impedance

compression phases and subtracted from the power

Qr ðvÞ

extracted from the air in the expansion phases. The result Hr ðvÞ ¼ : ð3Þ

is that the energy expenditure in the compression phase is PðvÞ

only partially recovered in the expansion phase. Thus, Following Ref. [1] we introduce the arbitrary, but

optimal control (deduced on the basis of isentropic power convenient, decomposition of the frequency-response func-

take-off equipment) provides maximum wave energy tion into its real (radiation resistance) and imaginary

absorption, but not maximum electrical energy production, (radiation reactance) parts

which is the ultimate goal of wave energy devices.

In the case of floating body WECs the power take-off Hr ðvÞ ¼ 2½BðvÞ þ ivCðvÞ; ð4Þ

needs to be capable of feeding and recovering energy to the where BðvÞ and CðvÞ are even real functions depending on

wave if reactive control is to be applied. Hydraulic the geometry of the device and BðvÞ is never negative [1].

machinery and linear generators are in general capable of Using Eqs. (3) and (4) in Eq. (2), the air balance equation

doing so, with little lost power. in the frequency-domain is now written as

V0

Qt ðvÞ ¼ Qd ðvÞ 2 BðvÞ þ iv CðvÞ þ PðvÞ: ð5Þ

2. Theoretical background gpa

Note that a similar equation occurs for floating body

2.1. The equation of motion

WECs, in particular with only one degree of freedom, where

the force acting in the power take-off equipment, the

The performance of the WEC depends on some

diffraction force and the excursion of the moving part of

characteristic physical parameters, which are related through

the WEC replace the turbine flow, the diffraction flow and

the equation of the motion in the case of floating bodies and,

the pressure amplitude, respectively.

in OWC devices, through the air balance equation, which

performs a similar role. Furthermore, the performance of the

2.2. Maximum energy absorption

WEC depends on the control strategy, which relates some of

the parameters involved in the equation of motion or equation

The amount of energy absorbed from the waves by the

of continuity, depending on the type of device.

OWC device during a time interval T is given by

Let us consider a fixed bottom-standing OWC device.

The ‘applied-pressure’ analysis presented in Refs. [3,4], ðT

gives the linearised version of the continuity equation EðTÞ ¼ pðtÞqt ðtÞdt: ð6Þ

0

applied to the air inside the pneumatic chamber

The equivalent equation for the floating body WEC is

V0 dpðtÞ obtained by replacing the pressure and turbine flow, by the

qt ðtÞ ¼ qd ðtÞ þ qr ðtÞ 2 : ð1Þ

gpa dt velocity and force of the power take-off equipment,

respectively. Assuming that the chamber is open to the

In the above equation V0 is the undisturbed volume of the atmosphere (p ¼ 0) for t , 0 and t . T; where T is much

pneumatic chamber, g is the adiabatic constant (equal to 1.4 bigger than the representative wave period (later T ! 1

for diatomic gases), pa is the atmospheric pressure, pðtÞ is will be assumed), the limits of integration in the above

the relative internal air pressure with respect to the equation may be extended to infinity. By applying

atmospheric pressure, and qt ; qd and qr are, respectively, Parseval’s theorem to the resulting equation, Eq. (6) can

the turbine flow, the diffracted flow and the radiation flow. be written in the frequency-domain as

The diffracted flow is the flow displaced by the incident

wave in a chamber open to the atmosphere and the radiation 1 ðþ1

EðTÞ ¼ Pð2v; TÞQt ðv; TÞdv : ð7Þ

flow is the flow displaced by the internal air pressure 2p 21

fluctuations in the absence of incident waves. From now on, whenever a real quantity is equal to a

By applying the Fourier transform to Eq. (1) the complex expression, only the real part of it is to be taken.

following equation relating the complex amplitudes of the Since the pressure is a real physical quantity (7), can be

above variables follows written as

V0

ivPðvÞ: ð2Þ 1 ðþ1 p

gpa EðTÞ ¼ P ðv; TÞQt ðv; TÞdv; ð8Þ

2p 21

Capital letters followed by v within brackets are used where asterisk stands for the complex conjugate. Making

throughout to refer to complex amplitudes. The complex use of Eq. (5) it turns out

J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166 159

EðTÞ ¼ P ðv; TÞQd ðv; TÞ

2p 21 can be seen from Eqs. (10) and (11) that the amount of

energy being lost due to imperfect control matching is given

V

2 BðvÞ þ iv CðvÞ þ 0 lPðv; TÞl2 dv: ð9Þ by

gPa

1 ðþ1 1 2

Taking into account the evenness of CðvÞ þ V0 ðgPa Þ21 ; DEðTÞ¼ BðvÞlHd ðvÞl2 lAðv;TÞl2 Hg ðvÞ2 dv ;

4p 21 2BðvÞ

after some algebra [1], we obtain

ð17Þ

"

1 ðþ1 lQd ðv;TÞl2

Q ðv;TÞ 2 i where

EðTÞ¼ 2BðvÞ Pðv;TÞ2 d dv:

2p 21 4BðvÞ 2BðvÞ Pðv; TÞ ¼ Hg ðvÞQd ðv; TÞ; ð18Þ

ð10Þ

has been used. Of course Hg0 ðvÞ ¼ 1=2BðvÞ is the optimal

Hence, maximum energy absorption value of Hg ðvÞ:

The time average non-absorbed power

1 ðþ1 lQd ðv; TÞl2

E0 ðTÞ ¼ dv ; ð11Þ

2p 21 4BðvÞ DW ¼ Lim M 1 DEðTÞ ; ð19Þ

is attained when T!1 T

Pðv; TÞ ¼ ; Hg0 ðvÞQd ðv; TÞ: ð12Þ computed from Eq. (17) giving

2BðvÞ

ðþ1

1 2

Similar results where obtained [1] for regular waves (note DW ¼ 1 BðvÞlHd ðvÞl2 Si ðvÞ Hg ðvÞ 2 dv;

that Qd ðvÞ is the double-sided Fourier transform, the reason 4p 21 2BðvÞ

why the factor 4 appears in Eq. (10) instead of 8 as in Ref. [1]. ð20Þ

The optimal condition Hg0 ðvÞ ¼ 1=2BðvÞ can be seen as a where Si ðvÞ ¼ LimT!1 M{1=TlAðv; TÞl2 } is the incident

reference control function, since it establishes, for optimal power spectrum. Applying similar arguments the maximum

conditions, a relation between a control variable, the averaged absorbed power is given by

pressure, and the input to the system, the diffraction flow.

For floating body WECs similar equations are found, where ðþ1 lH ðvÞl2 S ðvÞ

0 ¼ 1

W d i

dv: ð21Þ

BðvÞ would represent the hydrodynamic damping and, as 2p 21 4BðvÞ

before, the velocity of the WEC and the diffraction force

replace the pressure and diffraction flow, respectively. Defining the hydrodynamic-efficiency as the ratio

From Eq. (12) it turns out that the optimal values of the between the actual and maximum values of the averaged

air pressure are given by power absorbed from the waves, gives

ðþ1 hh ðvÞ ¼ 1 2 l1 2 2BðvÞHg ðvÞl2 ; ð22Þ

p0 ðtÞ ¼ qd ðtÞh0g ðtÞ ; h0g ðt 2 tÞqd ðtÞdt; ð13Þ

21 and

with 1 ðþ1 1 2

hh ¼ 1 2 0 BðvÞlHd ðvÞl2 Si ðvÞ Hg ðvÞ 2 dv;

W 21 2BðvÞ

1 ðþ1 1 ð23Þ

h0g ðtÞ ¼ eivt dv: ð14Þ

2p 21 2BðvÞ respectively, for a monochromatic wave of frequency v and

Since BðvÞ is real and positive it can easily be found that for an irregular wave with a spectrum Si ðvÞ:

h0g ðtÞ is an even function given by Eq. (20) is the function to

It is obvious that DW

be minimized in any control procedure attempting to

1 ðþ1 cosðvtÞ optimize the absorption of energy. A similar equation

h0g ðtÞ ¼ dv ¼ h0g ð2tÞ; ð15Þ

p 0 2BðvÞ would be obtained for a WEC floating body, with Hd ðvÞ ¼

so that p0 ðtÞ can only be computed if qd ðtÞ is known, Fd ðvÞ=AðvÞ being now the transfer function between the

theoretically, from t ¼ 21 to t ¼ þ1: Similar results are complex amplitude of the diffraction force Fd ðvÞ and AðvÞ;

obtained for floating body WECs. the Fourier transform of the incident wave, as before, BðvÞ

the damping coefficient and Hg ðvÞ ¼ VðvÞ=Fd ðvÞ; where

2.3. Hydrodynamic-efficiency VðvÞ is the complex amplitude of the floating body velocity.

By defining the transfer function of the diffraction 2.4. Ratio of compression-work to pneumatic-net-work

problem

An important consequence of the optimal relation (12) is

Hd ðvÞ ¼ Qd ðvÞ=AðvÞ; ð16Þ that, in general, the turbine flow is not in phase with the air

160 J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166

pressure. Using Eqs. (5) and (12) we have 3. Maximum energy production

V As pointed out earlier, the observance of optimal phase

Qt ðvÞ ¼ BðvÞ 2 iv CðvÞ þ 0 PðvÞ; ð24Þ

gpa condition implies that, in WECs of the OWC type, the

turbine is required to work as a compressor during certain

from which the phase-lag between turbine flow and air parts of the working cycle. Consequently, the shaft-power

pressure for optimal conditions delivered by a real turbine is twice reduced: (i) during the

compression-phase turbine losses must be added to the

v V shaft-power required to keep the machine rotating, and (ii)

u0 ðvÞ ¼ tan21 2 CðvÞ þ 0 : ð25Þ

BðvÞ gpa during the expansion phase turbine losses must be

subtracted from the power extracted from the waves.

This phase-lag means that during part of the wave cycle, If the compression-work is significant when compared

when the product of the flow and air pressure is negative, to the pneumatic-net-work, then turbine losses—viscous

energy is being delivered to the air (compression phase). and mechanical—may lead to unacceptably low values of

This energy is later recovered (in the expansion phase), the overall-efficiency. Our optimal condition must, there-

when this product is positive. fore, be modified in order to take into account this issue.

For the case of a monochromatic wave with a given In this section we present the analytical formulation of

frequency v; the ratio GðvÞ of the compression-work a new optimal relation aiming the overall-efficiency

(delivered to the air) to pneumatic-net-work, has been maximization. The formulation will be done in the

shown by in Ref. [4] to be given by frequency-domain.

The extension of the above reasoning to floating body

1 WECs is obvious. The compression phase corresponds to

GðvÞ ¼ ltanðuðvÞÞ 2 uðvÞl; ð26Þ

p the energy supplying phase and the expansion phase to the

energy absorption phase. This note must be taken into

which shows that this ratio increases significantly with u: account to generalize what is presented in the following

In the case of irregular waves, to estimate the ratio G sections.

between the compression-work and the pneumatic-net-

work, we will assume the following hypothesis: the total 3.1. Turbine-cycle efficiency

compression-work over a working cycle equals the sum of

the compression-works associated to each single harmonic A variable pitch-angle turbine is a Wells turbine that is

of the wave-power spectrum. Using this definition and capable of changing the pitch-angle of the blades while

taking into account Eqs. (20) and (21), G is estimated by rotating. Within limits defined by the occurrence of

aerodynamic stall and maximum value of the pitch-angle,

1 ð1 lHd ðvÞl2 Si ðvÞ h i and depending on the rotational speed, this type of turbine

12l2BðvÞHg ðvÞ21l2 GðvÞdv

2p 0 8BðvÞ can operate in any point of the pressure versus flow-rate

Gø ;

W

0 2DW plane. Different aerodynamic efficiencies are expected for

ð27Þ each point of this plane and instantaneous rotational speed

of the turbine.

where GðvÞ is given by Eq. (26), DW by Eq. (19) and W 0 by Let ht ðpðtÞ; qt ðtÞÞ designate the ‘instantaneous’ turbine

Eq. (20). According to Eq. (27), G is estimated by averaging efficiency for every point on the pressure versus turbine-

GðvÞ weighted with the wave-absorbed energy (pneumatic- flow plane. The useful time-averaged shaft-power (‘useful

net energy) associated to each single harmonic. In power’) over a time interval T can be written as

conformity with this approximation, we ignore cross- ðT

u ðTÞ ¼ 1

sgnðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞ

interactions between adjacent harmonics. Therefore, for W pðtÞqt ðtÞht ðpðtÞ; qt ðtÞÞ dt; ð28Þ

each single harmonic the amount of compression-work is T 0

simply given by the product of GðvÞ by the pneumatic-net where sgnðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞ designates the sign function (equal to

energy within an infinitesimal interval centered at that unity for positive arguments and to minus unity for negative

specific frequency. arguments).

This section applies also for floating body WECs, since Introducing the step function u (equal to unity for

in general there will be also a phase-lag uðvÞ between the positive or zero arguments and to zero for negative

force acting on and velocity of the power take-off arguments) into Eq. (28) results in

equipment, meaning that in some phases of the wave

ðT

cycle energy is being fed into the water and later recovered, u ðTÞ ¼ 1

W pðtÞqt ðtÞ½uðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞ

at least partially. Eqs. (26) and (27) still apply for floating T 0

body WECs with the obvious changes in the meaning of the

variables. þ uð2pðtÞqt ðtÞÞht ðpðtÞ; qt ðtÞÞsgnðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞ dt; ð29Þ

J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166 161

ðT u

W

u ðTÞ ¼ 1

W pðtÞqt ðtÞuðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞht ðpðtÞ; qt ðtÞÞdt h¼ ¼ hh hc ; ð38Þ

0

W

T 0

where hh is the average hydrodynamic-efficiency defined by

1 ðT

þ pðtÞqt ðtÞuð2pðtÞqt ðtÞÞht ðpðtÞ; qt ðtÞÞ21 dt: Eq. (22) and

T 0

ð30Þ 1

hc ¼ ht 2 G C 2 ht ;

E E

ð39Þ

ht

We now simplify the problem by assuming that the

turbine efficiency is constant in the expansion and the average ‘turbine-cycle’ efficiency, which takes into

compression phases, having eventually different values in account turbine losses (both aerodynamic and mechanical)

these two phases. Let hEt and hCt ; respectively, represent the in the expansion and compression parts of the working

turbine efficiency in the expansion and compression phases. cycle. In Eq. (39) G is given by Eq. (26) for monochromatic

Then the useful average shaft-power will be given by waves and Eq. (27) for irregular waves.

The ‘turbine-cycle’ efficiency is a mathematical abstrac-

tion. It synthesizes into one single value the role of three

u ðTÞ ¼ W

W Ct ðTÞ 1 :

Et ðTÞhEt 2 W ð31Þ

hCt variables directly related to the effectiveness of the working

cycle: hEt ; hCt and G: From Eq. (39) we verify that the

Et ðTÞ is the time-averaged expansion-power

In Eq. (30), W ‘turbine-cycle’ efficiency hc increases both with hEt and hCt

available to the turbine (i.e. the power being absorbed from and decreases for higher values of G: Understandably, hCt

the water) and W Ct ðTÞ the time-averaged compression- only influences the ‘turbine-cycle’ efficiency if the amount

power required from the turbine (i.e. the power being of compression-work is not null (G – 0). For the particular

supplied to the water), respectively, given by case of null compression-work, the ‘turbine-cycle’ effi-

ðT ciency reduces to the usual definition of turbine efficiency.

Et ðTÞ ¼ 1

W pðtÞqt ðtÞuðpðtÞqt ðtÞÞdt; ð32Þ Furthermore, we observe that the term associated with the

T 0

compression-work—the second factor of the right member

and of Eq. (39)—contains both hEt and hCt : This fact is easily

explained given the energy round-trip associated with the

ðT

Ct ðTÞ ¼ 2 1

W pðtÞqt ðtÞuð2pðtÞqt ðtÞÞdt: ð33Þ reactive power: energy is delivered to the system at a ‘cost’

T 0 given by hCt ; and then partially recovered it later on, with a

further ‘cost’ given by hEt :

We now extend the time interval to infinity in Eqs. (31)

Et ðTÞ and W Ct ðTÞ converge to their In summary: Eq. (37) is the objective function of the

and (32), so that W

Ct : Assuming

Et and W overall-efficiency optimisation process relative to a non-

ensemble average, respectively, W

isentropic-turbine. When handling it, we are faced with the

that there are no pneumatic losses, the energy extracted

0 2 DWÞ is completely available to the problem of evaluating the averaged efficiencies hEt and hCt

from the waves ðW

E C 0 2 DW: Recalling that G; as well as the ratio G between the compression-work and the

turbine and so Wt 2 Wt ¼ W

pneumatic-net-work available to turbine.

given by Eq. (26) for monochromatic waves and Eq. (27)

The content of this section is, as before, applicable to

for irregular waves, is the ratio between the compression-

floating body WECs with the proper adaptations. The

work and the pneumatic-net-work (i.e. the power available

compression-work corresponds to the energy supplied to the

to turbine)

water and the expansion work to the energy absorbed from

Ct

W the water, the compression and expansion efficiencies have

G¼ ; ð34Þ their obvious counterpart and, again, the flows are

0

W 2 DW

equivalent to forces and the pressures to velocities.

the average compression and expansion works may be

expressed, respectively, as 3.2. Phase-lag reduction

Ct

W 0

¼ GðW 2 DWÞ; ð35Þ

From Eq. (37) we observe that to maximize the time-

and averaged useful-power W u we need to minimize both DW

and G: Clearly, it is not possible to cancel DW without

Et ¼ ð1 þ GÞðW

W 0 2 DWÞ:

ð36Þ compromising G; and vice-versa.

Introducing the last two equations into Eq. (31), it turns As illustrated by the numerical results of next section,

out that to increase the overall-efficiency we need to reduce the

amount of compression-work. This implies a reduction of

W u ¼ ðW hEt 2 G 1 2 hEt :

0 2 DWÞ ð37Þ G; which in turn means a reduction of the phase difference

hCt u between the pressure and the turbine-flow, see Eq. (26).

162 J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166

(

The approach to accomplish this goal will be called 1

‘phase-lag reduction’ technique. tan uðvÞ¼ 2BðvÞMr ðvÞsin zðvÞ

BðvÞ½12Mr2 ðvÞ

We will now focus on the problem of developing this

" # )

sub-optimal control law. The idea is to find out a relation V0

between the pressure and the diffraction flow that 2v CðvÞþ ½1þ2Mr ðvÞcos zðvÞþMr ðvÞ :

2

gPa

maximizes the overall-efficiency rather than just the

hydrodynamic one. To do that we use the ‘ideal non- ð44Þ

causal optimal relation’ 1=ð2BðvÞÞ and then ‘relax’ it by The optimal phase-lag z0 ðvÞ is the one to which

introducing a corrective complex term: Hgc ðvÞ: That is, let corresponds a minimum absolute value of the phase-lag

the pressure and the diffracted flow be related, in the uðvÞ between turbine flow and pressure drop. This point is a

frequency-domain, by point of stationarity of uðvÞ with respect to zðvÞ lying in the

h i second or third quadrant

1

PðvÞ ¼ Hg0 ðvÞ þ Hgc ðvÞ Qd ðvÞ ¼ þ Hgc ðvÞ Qd ðvÞ;

2BðvÞ BðvÞ

tanðz0 ðvÞÞ ¼ ; ð45Þ

ð40Þ V0

v CðvÞ þ

gPa

where

from which we observe that the optimal phase-lag between

Hgc ðvÞ ¼ 2BðvÞMr ðvÞe izðvÞ

: ð41Þ pressure and turbine-flow is independent of Mr ðvÞ: Note that

z0 ðvÞ depends only on the geometry of the chamber. Thus, it

Note that so far no restrictions have been put on Hgc ðvÞ; is independent of the mechanical performance of the turbine

by changing its modulus Mr ðvÞ and phase zðvÞ; this and sea-state conditions. We will now proceed with the

complex vector function can cover the whole complex optimisation process by finding out the best Mr ðvÞ given the

plane, and thus Eq. (40) is still a completely general relation. optimal z0 ðvÞ:

In order to reduce the problem to a single optimisation

variable we need to relate somehow the modulus and phase 3.3. Modulus reduction

of Hgc ðvÞ: In other words, we need to breakdown the

optimisation process into phase and modulus optimisation Let us start by analyzing how the optimisation variable

variables, separately. Mr ðvÞ influences the hydrodynamic-efficiency.

From Eq. (23) we deduce that the circles in the complex From Eqs. (10), (11) and (40), it turns out that

plane defined by hh ðvÞ ¼ 1 2 Mr2 ðvÞ; ð46Þ

c

Hg ðvÞ 2 1 ¼ K ¼ cte ; ð42Þ i.e the hydrodynamic-efficiency decreases with the square of

2BðvÞ the modulus-reduction factor.

Using Eqs. (26), (38) and (39), as well as the optimal

are curves of equal hydrodynamic-efficiency. On the other phase-lag z0 ðvÞ given by Eq. (45), the overall-efficiency for

hand, the turbine-cycle efficiency indirectly depends on the a wave frequency is computed as a function of Mr ðvÞ; giving

phase u—see Eqs. (26), (27) and (39)—which in turn is a

function of both modulus and phase of Hgc ðvÞ as seen from h ¼ ð1 2 Mr2 ðvÞÞ

Eq. (5).

We now proceed by relaxing the hydrodynamic- ltanðuðvÞÞ 2 uðvÞl 1

hE 2 2 h E

; ð47Þ

efficiency by admitting, for each frequency, a certain p hC

deviation given by Eq. (42), the question will be to know

where as before, uðvÞ ¼ arg½Hbc ðvÞ is the phase-lag

what is the value of the phase-correction term eizv that

between the turbine flow and pressure drop and is given

maximizes the turbine-cycle efficiency.

by Eq. (44).

To answer this question let us look in more detail at the

The optimal value of Mr ðvÞ; denoted by Mr0 ðvÞ; is the one

air-mass balance equation. From Eq. (5), and using Eq. (40)

that maximizes the overall-efficiency, and the optimal

to replace Qd ðvÞ; it follows

reactive-control relation for the non-isentropic variable

pitch-angle turbine is

Qt ðvÞ ¼ Hbc ðvÞPðvÞ 0

ðv Þ

PðvÞ 1 þ Mr0 ðvÞeiz

2BðvÞ V0 H g ðv Þ ; ¼

¼ 2 Bð vÞ 2 i v Cðv Þ þ PðvÞ: Qd ðvÞ 2BðvÞ

1 þ Mr eizðvÞ gpa

0

ðv Þ

ð43Þ ¼ Hg0 ðvÞ½1 þ Mr0 ðvÞeiz ; ð48Þ

From Eq. (43) the phase-lag between the turbine flow and where Hg0 ðvÞ ¼ ð2BðvÞÞ21 is the optimal relation deduced

pressure drop, uðvÞ ¼ arg½Hbc ðvÞ turns out to be given by for an isentropic-turbine, as seen in Eq. (17).

J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166 163

Note that no constraints—causality, stability or other— the resonant-frequency of the device v < 1:4 rad/s—the

were imposed in deducing Eq. (48). As such, this new absolute value of the optimal z0 increases because small

optimal relation should be faced as an objective function to corrections are needed (and so tan(z0 ) becomes small).

be fulfilled as much as possible by a real control strategy. Similarly, using Eq. (47) together with Eqs. (49) and

The design of causal and stable control strategies aiming the (50), the corresponding optimal value of Mr0 ðvÞ is

fulfillment of Eq. (48) is the objective of future computed as the one that leads to higher overall

developments. frequency. Fig. 1 also shows the optimal values Mr0 ðvÞ

for the geometry under consideration assuming two pair of

turbine efficiencies for the expansion and compression

4. Results for a two-dimensional geometry phases: hE ¼ 0:7; hC ¼ 0:6 (full thick line) and hE ¼ 0:5;

hC ¼ 0:4 (full thin line). We verify that in order to

For the sake of illustration, we will now concentrate on a increase up to a reasonable level the overall-efficiency,

two-dimensional chamber with a rectangular planar form significant values of Mr are needed away from the

(10 m £ 10 m), with a negligible depth-submerged thin resonant-frequency v < 1:4 rad/s, the increase being

front-wall and with the back wall (20 m height) spanning much more pronounced in the high frequency range, as

vertically the whole water depth (h ¼ 10 m). for a wave frequency of about 2.48 rad/s a standing

For this kind of geometry [4] presents analytical

wave inside the air chamber is formed displacing no

expressions for the coefficients BðvÞ and CðvÞ

diffraction flow.

2mv sin2 ðakÞ As less efficient turbines are considered, the optimal

BðvÞ ¼ b; ð49Þ

rgk values of Mr0 ðvÞ increase (for an isentropic-turbine it

would be zero for any frequency). This has a direct

2b ðþ1 sin2 ðaxÞ dx

CðvÞ ¼ 2 2

; ð50Þ consequence on the optimal ratio of compression-work to

pr 0 v cothðxhÞ 2 gx x pneumatic-net-work, G; as shown in the broken lines of

where a and b are, respectively, the length and width Fig. 2. The lower of these curves (G54 ) concerns a hE ¼

(measured along the row) of the air chamber; h the constant 0:5; hC ¼ 0:4 efficiency turbine, whereas the highest

water depth, g the acceleration of gravity and r the water corresponds to a hE ¼ 0:7; hC ¼ 0:6 turbine (G76 ). Less

density; kðvÞ is the incident wave number related to the efficient turbines require smaller ratios of compression-

wave frequency v by the dispersion-relation work to achieve higher overall-efficiencies as seen by Eqs.

(38) and (39). However, a bit surprisingly, using at the

v2 ¼ gk tanhðkhÞ; ð51Þ

control level a curve of Mr0 ðvÞ that is not the proper one

and m is an auxiliary variable defined by does not affect critically the overall-efficiency. As shown

" #21 in the full lines of Fig. 2 for a hE ¼ 0:7; hC ¼ 0:6 turbine,

v2 the overall-efficiency reduces only slightly when, instead

m¼ 1þ 2

h cosech ðkhÞ : ð52Þ

g of using the Mr0 ðvÞ and G curves for this turbine, the

From Eq. (45), with the help of Eqs. (49) and (50), we curves of Mr0 ðvÞ and G computed for the significantly less

evaluate the optimal phase-lag z0 ðvÞ for the efficient turbine (hE ¼ 0:5; hC ¼ 0:4) are used. This is

frequency range of interest. Fig. 1 depicts the results.

As expected, for increasing frequencies—approaching

(G)—broken lines—versus wave frequency v: The thick broken line (G76 )

gives the ratio of compression-work for a turbine with hE ¼ 0:7 and hC ¼

0:6; whereas the thin broken line to a less efficient turbine (hE ¼ 0:5 and

Fig. 1. Optimal phase-lag (z0 )—broken line—and modulus (Mr0 ) versus hC ¼ 0:4). The two efficiency curves refer to a turbine with hE ¼ 0:7 and

frequency v: The thick line of Mr0 corresponds to turbine efficiencies of 0.7 hC ¼ 0:6; but in two different situations: with the proper ratio of

and 0.6, respectively, in the expansion and compression phases, whereas the compression-work (G76 )—thick full line—and with the ratio of com-

thin line to efficiencies, respectively, of 0.5 and 0.4. pression-work for the less efficient turbine—thin full line.

164 J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166

decreases (see Eq. (37)) but the cycle efficiency increases

(as G is reduced, see Eq. (39)).

The conclusion that the average turbine efficiency in the

expansion and compression phases does not affect seriously

the computation of the control parameters is rather

important, since it is somewhat difficult to specify before-

hand their proper values.

It is interesting to compare the overall-efficiency

achieved by the phase and modulus reduction technique

with what would be achieved with a classical fixed zero

pitch-angle Wells turbine. For such a turbine it is

Qt ðvÞ ¼ KPðvÞ; ð53Þ Fig. 4. Overall-efficiency (h) versus wave frequency v for a 0.7 efficiency

Wells turbine in three different cases: (a) optimal turbine coefficient

where K is a real constant depending on the turbine adjusted as a function of the wave frequency—full thick line; (b) turbine

rotational speed, assumed to be constant in the paper. Note coefficient Kt ¼ 0:01 m3(s Pa)21—full thin line; (c) turbine coefficient

that in this case there is no compression-work (G ¼ 0), since Kt ¼ 0:015 m3(s Pa)21—broken line.

the airflow and pressure drop in the turbine are always in

phase. speed, which is not very effective in irregular waves and can

From Eq. (5), together with Eqs. (18) and (53), it be done only within limits). It can be seen that for a 10 s

turns out wave period (v < 0:628 rad/s) the optimal value of K is

21 close to 0.0074 m3(s Pa)21, a value close to the one of the

V0

Hg ðvÞ ¼ ðK þ BðvÞÞ þ iv CðvÞ þ : ð54Þ Pico plant.

gPa

Fig. 4 compares the overall-efficiency of a 0.7 efficient

Using Eqs. (22) and (54) and noting that h ¼ hh hEt ; since Wells turbine in three cases: (i) optimal turbine constant

G ¼ 0; an expression for the overall-efficiency h is obtained. K 0 for each frequency; (ii) K ¼ 0:01 m3(s Pa)21 and (iii)

Deriving this expression in order to K and equalizing to zero K ¼ 0:015 m3(s Pa)21. As mentioned before in an irre-

allows to compute the optimal value of the turbine gular wave it is not possible to have K adjusted for each

coefficient K 0 ; resulting in wave frequency, so the efficiency curve for this case is not

sﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃ

realistic for real waves. The value K ¼ 0:01 m3(s Pa)21

V0 2

0 2

K ¼ B ðvÞ þ v CðvÞ þ 2 ; ð55Þ provides an efficiency curve that is close to the reference

gPa curve of case (i) for a wide frequency range and so will

to which corresponds the maximum overall-efficiency be used to compare the OWC response when active

control is used.

2 Fig. 5 compares the overall-efficiency in three

h0 ¼ hEt :

sﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃﬃ

2

ð56Þ

v V0 2 situations: (i) optimal reactive-control with the phase

1þ 1þ 2 CðvÞ þ

B ðvÞ gPa

Fig. 3 gives the optimal value of K versus wave

frequency. It shall be noted that a fixed blade pitch-angle

Wells turbine cannot adapt the turbine constant K to

the wave frequency (except by changing the rotational

cases: (a) proposed control strategy with Mr0 and z0 adjusted to the wave

frequency—full thick line; (b) optimal active control without accounting

for turbine losses at control stage (i.e. with Mr0 ¼ z0 ¼ 0)—full thin line;

Fig. 3. Optimal Wells turbine coefficient versus wave frequency v: (c) Wells turbine with Kt ¼ 0:01 m3(s Pa)21—broken line.

J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166 165

and modulus reduction method (i.e. with zðvÞ ¼ z0 ðvÞ and Table 2

Mr ðvÞ ¼ Mr0 ðvÞ); (ii) optimal reactive-control without Numerical results obtained for three sea-state conditions, after the

application of the phase-lag reduction (all values in %)

taking into account turbine losses at the control level

(i.e. with zðvÞ ¼ Mr ðvÞ ¼ 0Þ; (iii) classical zero pitch- After phase-lag reduction

angle Wells turbine with K ¼ 0:01 m3(s Pa)21.

We will now illustrate the performance of the OWC for Sea-state G hh hc h ¼ hh hc hWT ¼ hh hEt

three irregular waves—labeled A, B and C—described by

A 5.9 89.7 64.2 57.6 42.1

Pierson-Moskowitz energy spectra with zero-crossing B 6.5 84.7 63.7 53.9 35.7

periods of, respectively, 8, 10 and 12 s. Because the C 7.3 80.0 62.9 50.4 31.1

resonant period of this geometry is 5.5 s, all three state

Comparison with the classical Wells turbine case (last column).

conditions are off-resonance for this particular device.

Furthermore, given the assumed linear nature of our model,

the significant wave-heights of the incident wave fields are The benefits resulting from the application of the phase-

totally irrelevant for this study. The average turbine lag reduction technique are evident when comparing Tables 1

efficiency in the expansion and compression phases are, and 2. It can be observed that the phase-lag reduction imposes

respectively, 0.7 and 0.6 as before. smaller compression-work, which leads to satisfactory

Table 1 presents the numerical results obtained for the overall-efficiencies at the cost of only limited reduction of

case study without applying the phase-lag reduction, or wave energy capture. This conclusion agrees with the results

in different words, the results obtained following an obtained [3] who followed an approach based on numerical

exclusively hydrodynamic-oriented approach. The figures optimisation in the time-domain for prescribed time-series.

presented refer to the compression-power to pneumatic- In the last column of Table 2 the overall-efficiency for a

net-power ratio G; the hydrodynamic-efficiency hh ; the Wells turbine with an aerodynamic efficiency of hEt ¼ 0:7 is

turbine-cycle efficiency hc ; and the overall-efficiency h for shown for comparison. In these simulations K has been

the three irregular wave conditions under study. chosen for each wave spectra in order to maximize the

As we see from the last column of this table, the overall-efficiency.

overall-efficiency is drastically reduced due to the

mechanical and aerodynamic losses of the non-isentro-

pic-turbine. Sea-state C presents itself as a limiting case 5. Conclusions

beyond which the balance between the turbine expansion

and compression-work starts to be negative. We conclude The use of Wells turbines with variable pitch-rotor-

that there is no point in seeking for optimal hydrodyn- blades appears to be a promising way of improving the

amic-efficiencies, because these can only be achieved at performance of OWC devices. Nonetheless, the control of

the cost of high ratios of compression-power to this equipment must take into account the aerodynamic

pneumatic-net power, which lead to poor turbine-cycle- (plus mechanical) losses. Indeed, optimal conditions for

efficiencies and thus poor overall-efficiencies. maximum hydrodynamic-efficiency can diverge signifi-

Thus, in general, optimal conditions derived for an cantly from optimal conditions for overall-efficiency

isentropic-turbine case are inadequate when using a real maximization. In other words, control strategies derived

(non-isentropic) turbine. It is, therefore, of primary for an isentropic-turbine case are most probably inadequate

importance to reduce the ratio of the compression-work G when using a non-isentropic-turbine.

due to its effect on the turbine-cycle efficiency, see Eq. (39). To cope with the turbine losses new phase and amplitude

To put it differently, it is necessary to follow an overall- conditions have been developed in the frequency-domain.

efficiency oriented approach. Table 2 presents the numerical This was done assuming constant turbine efficiencies—

results after the application of the phase-lag technique during the expansion and compression phases—and a linear

described in Section 3.3. approach to the problem. It was shown that a significant

reduction in the amount of compression-work is needed

(when comparing to the value given by optimal control) in

Table 1 order to increase the overall-efficiency. The reduction of

Numerical results obtained for three sea-state conditions, before the compression-work can be achieved by means of the so-

application of the phase-lag reduction (all values are in %) called phase-lag reduction technique.

It was found that the guess of the average turbine

Before phase-lag reduction

efficiency at the expansion and compression phases required

Sea-state G hh hc h ¼ hh hc to compute the control parameters do not affect critically the

overall-efficiency, which is much more affected by the actual

A 39.9 100.0 31.4 31.4 efficiencies in these two phases of the turbine working cycle.

B 52.4 100.0 19.4 19.4

For the three sea-state conditions and geometry under

C 71.7 100.0 0.6 0.6

study, the application of a phase-lag reduction leads to

166 J. Perdigão, A. Sarmento / Applied Ocean Research 25 (2003) 157–166

reduction of wave energy capture.

The phase and modulus reduction technique may be [1] Evans DV. The oscillating water column wave-energy device. J Inst

applied also to floating body WECs, as explained in the text. Math Appl 1978;22:423–33.

The level of reduction on the phase and modulus depends on [2] Budal K, Falnes J. Interacting point absorbers with controlled motion.

the efficiency of the power take-off equipment (as this In: Count B, editor. Power from sea waves. London: Academic Press;

efficiency increases the modulus of the correction 1980. p. 381–99.

[3] Sarmento AJNA, Gato LMC, de AF, Falcão O. Turbine-controlled

term—Mr ðvÞ—reduces). In general floating body WECs

wave energy absorption by oscillating water column devices. Ocean

use hydraulic power take-off equipment or electrical linear Engng 1990;17(5):479–81.

generators (as in the AWS device), these two equipment [4] Sarmento AJNA, Falcão AF. Wave generation by an oscillating surface

types being more efficient than air turbines (and thus pressure and its application in wave-energy extraction. J Fluid Mech

requiring less deviation from the optimal control). 1985;150:467–85.

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