Converting a con to a pro
Relative to other renewable energy sources, waves are consistent and predictable and have high energy density. Their tremendous potential and kinetic energy can be converted to electrical energy via wave energy converters (WECs), which typically use floating or submerged structures to capture ocean waves. However, WECs face a technical challenge due to a phenomenon called parametric resonance, where energy in the primary capture mode (e.g. up and down motion) is transferred into other modes, such as rotational ones. This causes potential instability and decreases efficiency. Rather than trying to dampen this energy transfer, as other WEC systems do, the EU-funded CONPARA project is planning to harness it for an extra boost of energy.