Control Systems

MaREI’s ‘Control Systems’ capabilities focus on the active control of marine renewable energy devices, which can be used to optimise power production, observe system constraints, and minimise ‘wear and tear’ on components. The ‘Control Systems’ team work closely with the ‘Device Design, Testing and Evaluation’, ‘Power Take-Off’ and ‘Modelling and Simulation’ teams to provide a holistic and integrated approach to the optimisation and advancement of MRE Technologies. Research activities include the direct interconnection and synchronisation of generators in the field, the development of software/simulation tools for enhanced device control and increased power capture, and the formulation of energy-optimising control algorithms to exploit specific features unique to given devices.

Intelligent control systems must be employed to manipulate the power take-off (PTO) resistance so that the resonant frequency can effectively track varying sea conditions. In this regard, the maximisation of captured energy, through the application of intelligent control techniques for a given device specification, is vital if marine renewable energy is to become economically viable. For more information relating to MaREI’s ‘Control Systems’ capabilities, please contact one of the team members below.

Core Research Areas Include

  • Development of control-oriented hydrodynamic models and excitation-force estimation algorithms
  • Development of intelligent control systems that manipulate PTO resistance across varying sea conditions
  • Analysis of control design configuration for device arrays and interconnection
  • Development of next-generation MRE controllers based on nonlinear hydrodynamic/PTO models