The VALID concept is to create a hybrid testing facility that encompasses several wave energy technologies as test cases, with the final goal of delivering a novel test rig configuration methodology for accelerating wave energy technological development. The VALID proposal includes:


i) building a hybrid platform to determine, assess and optimise relevant ocean energy performance metrics


ii) realistically assess the reliability and survivability (hence performance) with physical (scaled or full-scale) and virtual test rigs for WECs, anywhere globally, therefore increasing global outreach for EU innovations.


iii) develop a methodology and related standard that include the above recommended testing procedures.


The consortium approach builds upon a unique hybrid method that is highly adaptable to technologies and can minimise expenditure for prototypes and of real sea-testing, as well as development times, whilst allowing to increase product quality and optimise components operation, reliability and adaptability.

PROJECT CONCEPT

Real-time hybrid model testing is a new approach for conducting small-scale experimental campaign. Real-time hybrid testing combines the efficiency of numerical simulation with the realism of experimental analysis. VALID is a 3-year project organised in 8 different work packages specifically designed to develop a Hybrid Testing Platform for accelerated testing with methodologies by combining the virtual and physical environment reducing cost in the product developing process, tackle scaling challenges and lower uncertainties once fully demonstrated in the ocean. VALID will use and adapt novel Hybrid Testing methodologies frequently used in the automotive industry through three different case studies (WP 3-5) that are specific to the ocean energy sector. This will transform the fundamental approach to accelerated testing and establish the correlation between the ocean and the lab conditions allowing for common testing procedures and convergence in technology across Europe.

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WP1 Methodologies for accelerated hybrid testing - WP1 will establish the overall framework for the development of the Hybrid Testing platform that is at the core of the VALID project. Overall, the activities of WP1 aim to assess and define the range of numerical and physical approaches to be considered under the project, including their interaction, with the ultimate goal of devising a methodology for accelerated hybrid testing that is compatible with the hybrid testing architecture.


WP2 Development of the VALID Hybrid Testing Platform (VHTP) – This work package will develop and adapt AVL’s Integrated and Open Development Platform (IODP) to serve as the intermediate hybrid testing platform for the ocean energy sector. The foundation for this to work is the interface between all modules in the WEC device development process – independent of tools or suppliers. Success is defined as demonstrating conceptually and in practice (I) accelerated validation (2) effort reduction in infrastructure and manpower (3) screening a wider funnel of the solution space and reaching (4) better quality. As the project continues, further functionality will be added, communication performance between modules will be improved, and the currently implemented interfaces will be brought closer to an open standard.


WP3 User Case #1: Testing of dynamic sealing failure – WP3 aims to produce a first-of-a-kind practical implementation of the novel testing methodology and VALID Hybrid Test Platform on a critical subsystem common to ocean energy devices, namely dynamic sealing systems. For the purposes of this project, the associated failure modes will be exemplified on CorPower device. In WP3 the seal test rig will be re-built and adapted to the VALID testing platform to test various scales of rod and pre-tension system seal configurations, up to and including full-scale 1:1. The existing test rig will be improved and developed to perform accelerated tests of the sealing systems, simulating actual working conditions. Operating environment tests will be carried out in addition to the tests performed on the test rig, such as biofouling and corrosion resistance tests.


WP4 User Case #2: Testing of electric generator failure – This WP aims to produce a first-of-a-kind practical implementation of the novel testing methodology and hybrid platform on a critical subsystem common to ocean energy devices, namely the electric generator. For the purposes of this project, this failure mode will be exemplified on IDOM’s OWC device (MARMOK). This WEC has been extensively demonstrated at the Mutriku shoreline OWC plant (12 months) and at the BiMEP open-sea testing site (2.5 years) within the H2020 OPERA project.

WP5 User Case #3: Testing of hydraulic pump failure – This WP aims to produce a first-of-a-kind practical implementation of the novel testing methodology and hybrid platform on a critical subsystem common to ocean energy devices, namely the leakage due to wear of seals and glider rings in sea water hydraulic pumps. For the purposes of this project, this failure mode will be exemplified on the Wavepiston device. This WEC has been extensively tested in open-sea at DanWEC test site in scale 1:4 – 1:2 (several iterations over 3 years) and dry lab tested within the Wavepiston – Next Generation Wave Power project supported by the Danish ForskEL grant and the LOCWEC project supported by Eurostars. In WP5 the existing pump sequencing and seal test bench of Wavepiston will be re-built and adapted to test various designs and materials for seals and glider rings. The existing test bench will be improved and developed to perform accelerated tests of the seals and glider rings, simulating actual working conditions. Operating environment tests will be carried out in addition to the tests performed on the test bench. The objective is to map the leakage of pumps over time due to wear in seals and glider rings of various designs and materials as functions of working pressure, water contamination, temperature stroke activity and duration.


WP6 Overall Assessment and Standardisation – The goal of this WP is to gather all the information from the previous work packages, analyse the medium/longer term impacts, in order to develop guidance and recommendations for wave energy technology development, and contribute to the standardisation of both the new testing infrastructure and procedures for critical component testing, particularly at low TRLs.


WP7 Exploitation, Knowledge Exchange and Dissemination – The main objective of this WP is to establish a strategy and implement action plans to optimise the knowledge exchange and dissemination of the project outputs, helping to ensure implementation of the testing platform in the ocean energy sector and to progress the scientific understanding of ocean energy.


WP8 Project Coordination – Ensures that the progress of all technical and administrative project tasks proceeds as planned and in line with the budget. This WP also oversees that all tasks and deliverables are of a high quality and completed to the standard expected by the EC. Furthermore, this WP manages the collaboration between the partners, the project implementation, and the quality assurance.