As part of its aim of accelerating the commercial exploitation of marine energy, the Marine Farm Accelerator (MFA) seeks to understand the uncertainty in energy yield, and hence revenue, from wave and tidal energy projects. Its first step in this process has been to develop a taxonomy document, listing the categories of losses and uncertainties that should be considered in an Energy Production Estimate (EPE). Frazer-Nash Consultancy has identified and assessed methods of quantifying these uncertainties and this report is one of the deliverables from that work. It contains a review of the relevant literature in this area and hence provides an overview of the state-of-the-art in uncertainty assessment for wave and tidal energy.
The taxonomy document identifies four main aspects to the uncertainty assessment (plus a general “Other Uncertainties” category) and a number of sub-categories under each. The available literature pertinent to each sub-category has been identified and the key themes for each have been summarised. This review encompasses:
- Major academic journals and relevant books (e.g. Renewable Energy, International Journal of Marine Energy);
- Proceedings of the major conferences (e.g. EWTEC, ICOE);
- Key industry publications on marine energy (e.g. IEC standards and technical specifications) and from associated industries (e.g. onshore and offshore wind); and,
- Additional references identified through the stakeholder engagement, which has been undertaken in parallel with this literature review and will be reported separately.
Although the wave and tidal uncertainty categories are the same, the ways in which they should be addressed and the current levels of understanding differ significantly. As a result, the wave and tidal aspects of this review have been largely separated.
A review of the active research programmes currently under way has also been carried out and is summarised in this report. This will inform a gap analysis, which will be the subject of a subsequent report.