The potential consequences of climate change are leading to large scale interest in the development of renewable energy sources. The conversion of wave energy into electrical power is particularly attractive to countries such as the UK which have ready access to this resource. A considerable amount of research has been conducted over the past 30 years or so into the design of Oscillating Water Column (OWC) power plants, but it is clear from this that the levels of efficiency achieved by the turbine need to be considerably improved in order for such power plants to become economically viable. An important factor which limits the level of power conversion efficiency achieved is the development of highly separated flow regions during the operating cycle, which severely reduces performance. There are consequently large performance benefits to be gained if the degree of flow separation can be significantly reduced, or ideally removed. A technology which could have such an effect is boundary layer blowing. The paper describes an investigation into the application of boundary layer blowing to the type of highly separated flow condition which occurs in impulse turbine configurations intended for use in OWCs. The results have shown considerable promise that further development of this technology could play a part in increasing the overall economic viability of OWC power plants.

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