The device will undergo trials for approximately 1 month.

BiMEP, the marine energy test site in Armintza, today welcomes a new floating device which will undergo trials at the facility, generating electricity from sea waves. The collector has been developed by Basque company Arrecife Energy Systems based on its own design.

It is the second system moored at BIMEP to test out the operativity and viability of the technology. Work is still progressing to determine which technologies offer the best options for exploiting this marine energy efficiently and competitively and to this end, open-sea trialling is essential. Devices installed at the Armintza site are moored, hooked up to land via submarine cables and operate in real maritime conditions, enabling observation and data-gathering which may allow technological improvements to be made.

Arrecife’s new device has been built at a 1/3 scale at the Derio plant of Tacomi, a partner in the project. It is 13 metres long and 3.5 metres wide, and weighs 9 tonnes. A 25-tonne mooring has been used.

Arrecife was set up in 2016 to develop a new design, patented from an original idea by a lecturer in hydrodynamics at the Bilbao College of Engineers. The system mimics the action of a natural reef with waves breaking on it, using the energy to turn “hair curler”-shaped rotors which in turn power the electric generators.