Renewable Energy Innovations, Generated by ThinGap

With the growing urgency for sustainable energy, pioneers are innovating new ways to harness the power of ocean waves.  Southern California based Ocean Motion Technologies is one of those pioneers. The company is developing a zero-emission energy solution using ThinGap’s motor technology in its generator mode.

Ocean Motion’s R&D is focused on sustainable, scalable, and more efficient marine hydrokinetic energy by focusing on small-scale applications like scientific & maritime buoys and moorings, offshore aquaculture, and coastal security and defense. Up until now, oceanic buoys have been powered by solar panels, which have a high cost of maintenance. Ocean wave energy is a natural choice for these use cases, but most wave energy devices are not designed for small-scale applications, as they can only function within a narrow range of sea states.

Leveraging SBIR Grants from the U.S. Department of Energy and National Science Foundation, Ocean Motion Tech has designed a wave generating prototype leveraging ThinGap’s TGD-108 (image). Originally designed and optimized for an aerospace application, the TGD-108 is available as a framed assembly with 1.4 kW of continuous power output while weighing only 670 grams or just less than 1.5 lbs.

With the adage that good motors make good generators, ThinGap’s technology is a logical choice for renewable energy applications that require overall system efficiencies. ThinGap’s unique scalable motor architecture and design offer efficiency up to 95%, and largely eliminates internal magnetic losses. The low impedance stator typical in ThinGap designs provides a stable, pure 3-phase sinusoidal, low-droop, with less than 1% harmonic distortion voltage output of clean, conditioned power.

Ocean Motion’s solution for powering data buoys is an adaptive wave energy device, with the ability to scale the technology up, and networking them together for oceanographic monitoring. The primary reason for pursuing marine power generation is due to the inherent energy density of ocean waves, which concentrates solar and wind energy and thus offering far greater energy potential in comparison.

With more than two decades of experience in the design and production of slotless motor kits, ThinGap salutes the novel efforts of customers like Ocean Motion Tech.  Ongoing and future projects designed to combine proven technology in an applied fashion are at the heart of innovative solutions like the ones being actively demonstrated in the Pacific Ocean.