CalWave completes historic wave energy pilot in California


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The future of wave energy innovation just became (a lot) brighter— thanks to a pilot project by an Ocean Solutions Accelerator alum, CalWave.

Globally, renewable energy makes up about one third of electricity production—with hydroelectricity contributing the vast majority of power generated. With its potential to supply more than one third of global energy demand, wave energy could be a fast-growing subset of global renewable energy sources. But harnessing it does not come without challenges, as vessels struggle to withstand rough conditions at sea—both in terms of weather, and corrosion of materials over time. 

CalWave, members of the Ocean Solutions Accelerator's first wave cohort, are working hard to change that—and make wave energy technology accessible to all. This California-based energy developer on a mission to provide reliable, cost-effective ocean wave technologies for sustainable energy access. We're thrilled to share that CalWave has just achieved an impressive milestone, and completed a successful pilot of California's first at-sea, long-duration wave energy project. 

RELATED | The Ocean Solutions Accelerator Program >>

In September 2021, CalWave was awarded a special US Department of Energy Award to pilot their patented xWave technology™ to determine its long-term viability withstanding storms and rough wave conditions. The pilot device, the x1™,  launched off the coast of San Diego for an intended six-month test voyage. Ultimately, it proved so successful—weathering two major storms, and requiring zero interventions to maintain performance capturing energy and data—that the pilot project was even extended from six to ten months. 

“Marine energy technologies—like CalWave’s xWave—hold incredible potential to help transform our energy system in numerous ways, from serving as a resource on our nation’s grid to helping remote and coastal communities reduce their reliance on fossil fuels to powering ocean exploration and observation systems,” said Jennifer Garson, U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office Director.

“CalWave’s successful deployment in California marks a critical step in their pathway to commercializing their wave energy system and is an important step forward in the marine energy industry’s efforts to demonstrate and deploy these technologies.”

Learn more about CalWave's pilot below—and find out what this means for the future of wave energy.



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