The paper presents a concept of a wave energy converter and the numerical model to calculate the hydrodynamic responses in waves and the power produced by the power take off system. The system consists of an asymmetric floater with an interior U-tank partially filled with water and two lateral air chambers connected by a duct. The motion of the U-shaped oscillating water column, mainly induced by the rolling of the floater, forces the air through the duct where a Wells turbine is installed to absorb the wave energy.
The wave-floater hydrodynamics is calculated with a Green's function panel method, while the oscillating water column motions hydro-mechanics are derived from the one-dimensional Euler's equation. The dynamics of the Wells turbine is realistically represented by one additional differential equation on the unknown air pressure fluctuation. This equation is derived assuming small amplitude motions of the water column and assuming the linear isentropic relation is valid for the air thermodynamics in the air chambers. The Wells turbine is characterized by a drastic drop of efficiency above a critical pressure value due to stalling on the blades. The effect of a by-pass valve to prevent stalling is introduced in the numerical model in a simplistic way. The numerical model is implemented and tested for a wave energy converter with a displacement of 1150 t, including 490 t for the interior water column, and an installed turbine with 2.3 m of diameter. An analysis of the influence of changing different design parameters on the system efficiency is also presented.