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ANACONDA

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WAVE ENERGY BULGING SNAKE

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BULGE WAVES

 

Bulge waves in distensible tubes are described by Lighthill ("Waves in fluids", Cambridge, 1978).  A good example is the pressure pulse which travels along your arteries.

 

Typically a rubber tube filled with water will bulge locally when squeezed; and this bulge will propagate along the tube at a speed   c  given by

Here E is the tensile modulus of the rubber, d the diameter of the tube, h its wall thickness and  rho  is the density of water.  You can control the speed by choosing the dimensions of the tube and the properties of the rubber.

 

The bulge wave is a wave of pressure, associated with a longitudinal oscillation of fluid, forwards and backwards along the tube.  When the pressure is high, the water is flowing forwards, when it is low the water is flowing backwards.  This wave carries energy.

 

The mathematics of a bulge tube in the sea has been worked out.  If the bulge in the tube travels at the same speed as the wave, then there is a resonant interaction and the bulge grows linearly along the tube.  Typically in the north Atlantic, a tube 7m in diameter and 150m long would collect an average power over the year of about one megawatt.   The capital cost per megawatt is likely to be about 2-3 million, much less than existing wave power converters.

 

To learn more, download our technical memo anaconda.pdf.

 

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