Lockheed Martin says it has signed a contract with Victorian Wave Partners Ltd. to begin developing the world’s largest wave energy project yet. The 62.5-megawatt peak power wave energy generation project will be built off the coast of Victoria, Australia, using Ocean Power Technologies' (OPT) PowerBuoy® wave energy converter technology.
The company’s PowerBuoy wave generation technology uses a "smart," ocean-going buoy to convert wave energy into low-cost, clean electricity. The buoy moves up and down with the rising and falling of waves. This mechanical energy drives an electrical generator, which transmits power to shore via an underwater cable.
Contributing to Australia’s goal of 20 percent renewable energy by 2020, the project is expected to produce enough energy to meet the needs of 10,000 homes.
“We are applying our design and system integration expertise to commercialize promising, emerging alternative energy technologies, including ocean power,” said Tim Fuhr, director of ocean energy for Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems and Training business. “This project extends our established relationship with OPT and Australian industry and enables us to demonstrate a clean, efficient energy source for Australia and the world.”
Victorian Wave Partners Ltd. is an Australian special purpose company owned by Ocean Power Technologies Australasia Pty Ltd. As a leader in wave energy technology development, OPT will lead the project, while Lockheed Martin will provide overall project management, assist with the design for manufacturing of the PowerBuoy technology, lead the production of selected PowerBuoy components and perform system integration of the wave energy converters.
Lockheed Martin and OPT have been collaborating since 2004, first on the development of an Advanced Deployable System for the U.S. Navy and most recently to design and launch utility-scale wave energy converters.
“We are pleased to be working with Lockheed Martin in connection with this exciting project in Australia,” said Charles F. Dunleavy, chief executive officer of OPT. “Development of this project draws on core strengths of both our companies and represents an important undertaking for commercialization of the PowerBuoy technology.”