Imagine My Surprise . . . . .
.... to discover that others had happened upon a similar idea for a wave energy conversion / floating platform stabiliser to one that I have played with for over ten years now. My inspiration came from reading the Marshall Savage book, The Millenial Project.The version above was conceived by Joseph George, and is described further here. The idea as pictured needs some modification to provide greater robustness in high seas, but the drawing demonstrates the function of one short row of the devices. In an actual floating platform, many such rows would exist, in arrays.
The next two images portray a similar device which helped win the Rolls-Royce Prize for best Master's Thesis in 2007, and the JEC Innovation Award in 2009. This prize winner is the result of a collaboration between Norwegian and Belgian engineers. As you can see, the "point absorbers" in the second platform converter are not open-bottomed like the absorbers in the Joseph George design at top.
The image above and to the right shows a "wave farm" comprising four of the platforms pictured below and to the left.
The platform design with multiple point absorbers presents advantages that are not available from several other wave energy conversion devices, particularly when incorporated into a seastead design.
The concept of using such point absorbers for both wave energy conversion and for "shock absorbers" to smoothe the platform's ride, appeals to my sense of multi-functionality. For rough seas in the open ocean, some form of "breakwater" would still be necessary to reduce the shock to the platform and the point absorbers.Looking at the most recent prototype design for a seastead from the Seasteading Institute, it is not terribly difficult to imagine the placement of similar point absorbers beneath the platform, given the suitable infrastructure. As I said, however, in high seas the occupants of such a seastead might be grateful to have a sturdy floating breakwater on the job. Al Fin engineers are in the process of designing such a "device."
I am pleased to see that the "point absorber" wave energy conversion idea has been developed to this point by multiple inventors, and hope that such platforms can eventually be used productively.