A design tool called DTOcean has been launched as an open source software package to assist project developers in designing wave and tidal energy arrays.
“Access to high quality design tools is a prerequisite for reducing costs in complex engineering projects, such as wave and tidal arrays,” says Henry Jeffrey, coordinator of the DTOcean project. “The launch of the software presents a great opportunity for the industry and research organizations to engage with the DTOcean software to make it work for them.”
Given a set of user inputs regarding the chosen wave or tidal energy converter and array location, DTOcean can identify optimal layouts, balance of plant (including specific components) and logistics procedures for that array, according to a press release. Optimization is based on the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCoE), and further feedback on reliability and environmental impact is provided.
The software includes computational modules, which can also be run in isolation from the wider tool for specific tasks:
• Hydrodynamic Array Layout
• Electrical System Architecture
• Moorings and Foundations
• Array Installation
• Operations and Maintenance
DTOcean is available as a free download, along with manuals and tutorials, from the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre website.
DTOcean was produced through a three-year collaborative project funded by the European Commission and gathered 18 international partners, including utilities, project developers, industrial suppliers and research and development organizations. The University of Edinburgh coordinated the project.