Marine currents can be an effective source for renewable electric energy conversion. In this paper a direct drive permanent magnet synchronous generator capable of being connected to a vertical axis turbine for marine current energy conversion is presented.
This 5 kVA, 120 pole, 10 rpm prototype generator was initially designed for ocean current speeds of 1.5 m/s using a finite element based electrical machine design software. Unlike most conventional generators this machine has a cable wound stator. To evaluate the electrical and mechanical performance characteristics of this machine, laboratory experiments are being carried out using a speed-controlled motor drive system and resistive three phase loads. First measurements of voltage and current show good agreement between the modelled and built generator.