The wave and tidal energy market is expected to grow at a significant rate in the coming years due to substantial cost reduction opportunities through capacity up-scaling and technological innovations. As wave and tidal energy are renewable forms of energy, almost all countries around the world are trying to develop wave and tidal energy because they provide a constant and steady source of clean energy. According to the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) of U.K., wave and tidal energy combined has a potential to distribute approximately 20% of the electricity needs in the U.K.
Plenty of ocean surfaces and considerable potential of energy generation in the countries around the world has led operators to engage in ocean energy generation. The wave and tidal energy technology development is in its initial phase, so there is a sufficient scope for new entrants in the wave and tidal energy market by bringing up advanced technologies.
Wave energy is transport of energy by ocean surface waves and uses that energy for water desalination, electricity generation, pumping of water and various other tasks. Tidal energy is a type of hydropower that converts the energy from the tides to generate electricity. Wave and tidal energy help to increase energy security, decarbonizes the energy supply and reduce the consumer’s dependence on imported fossil fuels.
On the basis of type, the wave and tidal energy market can be categorized as tidal energy and wave energy. On the basis of the generation of tidal energy, the wave and tidal energy market can be categorized as dynamic tidal power, tidal stream generator, tidal lagoon and tidal barrage. Tidal stream generator use kinetic energy of moving water to power turbines, but tidal barrage use the potential energy from the difference of height between low and high tides to power turbines.
On the basis of generation of wave energy, the wave and tidal energy market can be categorized as oscillating wave surge converter, surface attenuator, point absorber buoy, overtopping device and oscillating water column. Point absorber buoy floats on the surface of water and uses rise and falls of swells to drive hydraulic pumps and generate electricity. Oscillating water column devices are located on the shore or in deeper water offshore and air chamber compress air in chambers through an air turbine to create electricity.
Some of the factors driving the growth of the wave and tidal energy market are scalability within a small area, allowing large project development in phases, strong government policy framework and incentive schemes, predictable and constant source of renewable energy, and generation of power for remote locations where drawing grid connections are not cost effective or feasible. The risk of marine mammals and fish being struck by tidal turbine blades is a major factor restraining the growth of the wave and tidal energy market to some extent. As it is an immature technology, so there is a lack of funding channels and commercial deployment of projects which is also hindering the wave and tidal energy market growth.
Some of the competitors in the wave and tidal energy market are Ocean Renewable Power Company LLC, Atlantis Resources Limited, Marine Current Turbines Limited, S.D.E Ltd., Ocean Power Technologies Inc., AquaGen Technologies, Carnegie Wave Energy Limited, Pelamis Wave Power Ltd., Tenax Energy Solutions, LLC, and Aquamarine Power Limited.
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