Power unlimited

Published: Wednesday 15 July 1998

Technological breakthroughs may help reduce the average cost of wave power. British researchers have developed a few techniques that are able generate electricity for under US $1 per kilowatt-hour (kwh). This is the cost below which energy production becomes competitive. Stephen Salter at the University of Edinburgh, UK, has developed a device, called the "nodding duck" that can produce wave power for 4.2 cent/kwh. It costs about 4 cent/kwh of electricity from a new gas-fired power station and 7.3 cent/kwh from a nuclear power station. Tom Thorpe, the government's advisor on wave power, says that three out of the six devices developed in the UK, have already been improved that could make wave power cheap. Britain is seriously considering these technologies that can make conversion of wave energy into electricity economically viable ( New Scientist , Vol 158, No 2134).

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