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Title: Optimisation of a novel gyroscopic wave energy converter
Author: Edwards, Robert
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2013
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The work presented in this thesis describes the development and optimisation of a novel Gyroscopic Wave Energy Converter (GWEC) and is divided into three parts, namely mathematical modelling, experimental investigation, and optimisation of the proposed GWEC:  The simulation of the GWEC, using a mathematical model, enabled an investigation of the GWEC performance in the open ocean with idealised inputs  An experimental rig was constructed with a mechanical input to drive the GWEC in a controlled and repeatable fashion. Optical sensors and data logging software were used to record rotational velocities of the rig inputs and outputs.  The results of the mathematical modelling and experimental work were used to determine the optimal design of the proposed GWEC. Experimental data from the rig was used to verify the accuracy of the mathematical models. The models were then modified to examine different ocean wave input profiles to understand how the system responds to an ocean environment. It was concluded from both the experimental and the mathematical work that the system was unable to respond to the more random ocean wave input. A control system was introduced into the model to keep the gyroscope rotor in phase with the wave input, enabling the rotor to run at a steady state. The energy output from different wave types was studied, leading to the conclusion that the optimal size for the GWEC system was a 1m diameter, 400kg rotor with an incorporated 8kW generator. A modular design based on the above dimensions would allow multiple units to be used together in a pontoon. The number of units and size of the pontoon could be varied depending on the prevailing wave conditions and energy demand. This modularity combined with easy mass production of smaller GWEC units makes the proposed system an interesting area for further research and development. This thesis describes work undertaken by the author. To the best of the author's knowledge, the work is original. Where the work of others, published and unpublished, has been used, appropriate reference has been made.
Supervisor: Robb, David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available