Physics  College of Engineering 

Physics Thesis Defense: Brandon Green

Date(s): 12/11/2012 2:00 PM - 12/11/20123:00 PM
Location: Seng 201
Contact: Amit Tandon atandon@umassd.edu 508-999-8357


Physics Thesis Defense - Brandon Green

“The Design, Construction, and Numerical Modeling of a New Wave-Energy Converter Technology.”

A numerical model of a new point absorber wave energy converter (WEC) technology was designed for simulation purposes using Python. The governing equations were defined to take into account the relevant forces on the buoy in an ideal wave environment, as well as any opposing forces due to damping, the power take off (PTO) mechanism, and alternator. These equations of motion were solved using a high order iterative process to study the linear kinematics of the buoy, the behavior of the power take off, and associated power output in an ideal ocean wave environment. The model allows for the adjustment of relevant parameters to explore the behavior of the WEC and optimize system efficiency depending on the wave conditions. The numerical model was designed to run single simulations for a specified time interval, and the design of an optimization routine was also performed and employed. The optimization portion of the model was implemented to study the response of the virtual WEC to a variety of input conditions pertaining to the buoy, power take off, and wave dynamics. This thesis explains the development of the prototype WEC, and the associated numerical model in addition to evaluating the response of the WEC to a variety of input conditions. The output of the numerical model is discussed for the associated wave field used for simulation purposes. The design and implementation of the numerical model provides insight into changes in design components to maximize system power output and efficiency. The results of the numerical model, and examples of data output for specific input conditions are explored in the final chapters, as well as suggestions for future work.


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