Global attempts to increase generation of clean and reproducible energy have contributed to considerable progress in ocean-wave power-generation technologies. The efficiency of ocean-wave energy converters has improved by almost an order of magnitude in the last decade. In this report, we consider a floating-type gyroscopic ocean-wave power-generator that has proven to generate 50 kW in a prototype test conducted by a Japanese company in 2012.
A gyroscopic power generator consists of a buoy, a gimbal, and spinning rotors mounted on a gimbal. The gimbal is installed on the deck of the buoy and rotates when the buoy oscillates or rocks by ocean waves. The gimbal axis is connected to an electric generator.
The objectives of our research are to understand quantitatively the mechanisms of gyroscopic ocean-wave power-generators and to improve the component design of the generator to maximize power output. To this end, we develop a mathematical model and a scale model of a gyroscopic ocean-wave power-generator. This integrated approach is to numerically simulate power generation and to clarify the effect of relevant design parameters.