Innovative Methods for wave energy Pathways Acceleration through novel Criteria and Test rigs

Start Date

1st January 2021

End Date

31 December 2023

Funding Body

EU Horizon 2020 / INEA


VGA srl

Research Partners

VGA srl, SINTEF Energy, SINTEF Ocean and Yavin Four Consultants

Project Partners

VGA srl, SINTEF Energy, SINTEF Ocean and Yavin Four Consultants

Principal Investigators

Dr Jimmy Murphy and Dr Anne Marie O’Hagan

Research Area

Offshore Renewable Energy & Coastal & Marine Systems


The IMPACT project is funded under the topic “Building A Low-Carbon, Climate Resilient Future: Secure, Clean And Efficient Energy” and specifically the topic “New test rig devices for accelerating ocean energy technology development.” IMPACT is a collaborative research and innovation project which aims to develop and demonstrate a next-generation testing approach for Wave Energy Converters (WECs). Performance and reliability are two of the key aspects that will be addressed by the novel testing methodologies and metrics. The project will help to de-risk the device technology development by highlighting failures due to the interdependence of subsystems. This will result in a reduction of the overall device costs from a technology development point of view and in a risk and cost reduction for the subsequent testing phase in the sea environment. At the end of the project a novel platform for all the wave energy converter types will be delivered, contributing to a rapid acceleration in their progress through laboratory tests and leading to advancement from TRL 3 to TRL 5.


The project aims to design and manufacture two novel test rigs covering up to 75% of Wave Energy Converters (WEC) subsystems affecting device LCOE. The novel methodologies proposed by the IMPACT project reduce the test duration by 50% with respect to a typical endurance test and focus on key aspects such as reliability, performance, and survivability. Clear quantitative, test-derived metrics will be produced to characterize these aspects, including also techno-economic and environmental impact assessment of WECs.

MaREI-UCC are leading the work package on techno-economic and environmental impact evaluation. This will define the techno-economic and environmental constraints driving device design and testing. The WECs and target sites identified earlier in the project will be used to identify critical aspects at device and array levels. UCC will analyse the influence of each identified subsystem on the economics, life-cycle assessment, and environmental impact of the different WEC types; this evaluation will address specific tests and control criteria the rigs should cover to demonstrate subsystems compliancy with respect to the sector related standards, where these exist. This information will then be used to refine the design, where applicable.

Work Packages

  1. Project management
  2. Test rigs parameters and mechanical specifications
  3. Grid integration and Electrical compliance
  4. Techno-Economic and Environmental impact evaluation – MaREI – UCC Lead
  5. New testing methodologies and metrics
  6. Drivetrain test rig design and fabrication
  7. Integration of novel test rigs and methodologies
  8. Project exploitation and dissemination