Keywords: wave energy, tidal energy, ocean thermal energy conversion, OTEC, ocean wind energy, offshore wind turbines, wave power, wind power, tidal power, ocean energy technology, electricity generation, marine renewable energy
Research and development in ocean energy technologies
The volatile fuel prices for electricity generation, elevated concerns about global warming and energy security has prompted countries to look for alternative energy sources. One of the alternative energy sources is ocean energy. Currently, there is few ocean energy technologies that are commercially available to harness electrical energy from ocean despite the fact that ocean covers more than 71% of the earth's surface. The ocean energy technologies are separated in four main categories: 1) wave energy converter; 2) tidal energy converter; 3) ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC); 4) ocean wind energy. This paper presents the latest research and development carried out in ocean energy technologies. It describes the ocean technologies that are commercially available and the technologies that will soon be commercially available. It also presents how different ocean energy technologies are used to generate electricity.