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NEDO, IHI to Begin Long-term Test of Ocean Current Power Generation System

2019/07/30 01:00
Sousuke Kudou, technical writer
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The "Kairyu" test machine of an underwater floating ocean current power generation system (source: NEDO and IHI)

New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and IHI Corp will start a long-term (one-year or longer) verification test in an actual sea area by using the "Kairyu" 100kW-class test machine of an "underwater floating ocean current power generation system."

The test machine will be shipped from IHI's Yokohama Office (Yokohama City) to a sea area off the coast of Kuchinoshima (island), Toshima-mura, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan, in early August 2019.

The underwater floating ocean current power generation system moors a floating power generation unit from a weight (sinker) set up on the seabed and generates electricity by using ocean current energy, which does not fluctuate much.

There is an abundance of ocean current energy in Japan, which is surrounded by the sea on all sides. Especially, the country has good geographical conditions for ocean current energy. For example, the Black current, which is one of the most powerful ocean currents in the world, is flowing in sea areas near the country.

The Kairyu is a test machine of an underwater floating ocean current power generation system with a rated output of 100kW (50kW x 2 units). The diameter of its turbine is about 11m. The length and width of its floating body are both about 20m. The rated flow velocity is 1.5m per second (3 knot). The floating depth is about 30-50m.