For the past several years an inter-disciplinary research group at Oregon State University (OSU), working in conjunction with Columbia Power Technologies (CPT) has been researching innovative direct-drive wave energy systems. These systems simplify the conversion of wave energy into electricity by eliminating intermediate energy conversion processes. In support of this research OSU and CPT have developed a hybrid numerical/physical modeling approach utilizing a large scale linear test bed (LTB), and a commercial coupled analysis tool. This paper will present an overview of this modeling approach and its application to the design of a 10kW prototype wave energy conversion system that was tested in the open ocean in the fall of 2008. The data gathered during ocean testing was used to calibrate the numerical model of the device and predict the energy capture potential of the system.

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