Groundwork involved horizontal direction drilling for the pre-installation of a cable conduit in a work package delivered with local supply chain partners. It was carried out following a rigorous review and authorization process involving Portuguese national and regional authorities.
CorPower Ocean Portugal Managing Director Miguel Silva said careful attention was paid to the on-land preparation work in full dialogue and collaboration with the local community.
"Working alongside our local partners we identified the horizontal directional drilling process, to pre-install a cable conduit under the beach dunes at proper depth, as the most the effective approach to minimize impact on the local habitat," said Silva.
"This method ensured we could avoid trenching from the on-land substation, located within the sand dunes, through to the beach to allow cable pulling from the ocean into the substation. The approach chosen also minimized disruption for the local community and tourists, avoiding the use of excavators and open trenches. We place great importance on our environmental stewardship role engaging with all stakeholders from the outset to ensure the most appropriate measures to protect and respect the ocean, nearshore environment, and all species living there."
CorPower Ocean's next generation commercial-scale C4 WEC (Wave Energy Converter) is currently being constructed in Portugal and Sweden. Working in collaboration with several utility companies, it will be used to form part of a larger four-system array. In preparation for the upcoming marine deployment, CorPower Ocean has also teamed up with international marine energy R&D consultancy WavEC Offshore Renewables to develop a robust offshore environmental monitoring system.
"A sophisticated environmental monitoring system has now been deployed at the HiWave-5 test site, 4km off the coast of Aguçadoura," said Enric Villarín, Project manager in CorPower Ocean. "This equipment, including F-pods and hydrophones, are recording baseline measurements, that are retrieved periodically, to assess the acoustic profile of our technology prior and post marine installation. Cetaceans visual monitoring campaigns are also executed to monitor that our technology is not affecting these mammals negatively. To obtain real-time sea states characterization, wave measurement buoys have been deployed and are sending live data to our servers regarding, height, period and direction of the incoming waves. This is an extension of the environmental efforts ongoing within the project over the last years, and has involved considerable engagement with the local community, most notably the fishing sector which is actively helping with the work."
CorPower Ocean is working to successfully introduce certified and warrantied WEC products to the market, making wave energy a bankable technology to attract mainstream renewable project finance and drive rapid deployment scale-up to address climate change.