Featured, Opinion, Science

Harnessing The Power Of Ocean Waves For Clean Energy

Nmesoma Okwudili


July 7, 2023

Archimedes Wave Swing

In the pursuit of renewable energy sources, the Archimedes Wave Swing (AWS) has emerged as a notable wave energy converter. This innovative technology is designed to harness the power of ocean waves and offers a promising solution for generating clean electricity. This article explores the concept, development, and potential of the Archimedes Wave Swing as a sustainable energy solution.

The Archimedes Wave Swing originated as a wave power converter concept in the 1970s when design engineer Stephen Salter introduced the Salter’s Duck device. Resembling a duck in motion, the AWS uses waves’ up-and-down nodding motion to generate electricity. Over the years, the AWS has undergone significant development and testing to transform it into a viable wave energy conversion system.

The Archimedes Wave Swing is characterised by its simplicity and elegance. It consists of a cylindrical buoy or floater unit, which is tethered to the ocean floor and submerged underwater. This submerged floater unit is the only moving part of the system and utilises the buoyancy of air within it to capture the energy of the passing waves.

Several full-scale offshore tests have been conducted to assess the performance and feasibility of the AWS. These tests have provided valuable insights into the system’s efficiency, power generation capabilities, and operational characteristics. The AWS has demonstrated its potential as a wave energy converter, laying the foundation for further advancements in its design and implementation.

Following the successful offshore tests, the Archimedes Wave Swing transitioned from a technology development project to a fully functioning company in wave power. A company was established in Scotland, where further research, development, and commercialisation efforts have been undertaken to promote the AWS as a practical and scalable wave energy solution.

The Archimedes Wave Swing offers several advantages as a wave energy converter. Its simplicity of design, with only one moving part, minimises maintenance requirements and enhances reliability. Furthermore, the AWS has the potential to contribute significantly to the renewable energy mix, leveraging the immense power of ocean waves to generate clean electricity and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The Archimedes Wave Swing represents a promising advancement in wave energy conversion technology. Through its innovative design and successful offshore testing, this wave energy converter has showcased its potential as a viable and sustainable source of clean electricity. With further research and commercial development, the Archimedes Wave Swing could play a significant role in meeting the world’s growing energy demands while reducing the environmental impact of power generation.


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