The waves of the sea are not only useful for surfers but we could all take advantage of the energy that their swaying produces to produce electricity with the right technology for it. This non-polluting renewable energy is called wave or wave power and so far there are few projects in the world as its technology is expensive and difficult.
In Spain, wave energy is not yet exploited commercially, there are only two pilot stations in the Community of Cantabria and the Basque Country, and one is in the pipeline in Granadilla, Tenerife.
The energy produced by the waves is harnessed by buoys that go down and up on a piston, to which a hydraulic pump is installed. The water leaves and enters the pump and with the movement drives a generator that produces electricity which is sent to land by a submarine cable.
About us Iberdrola put the plant into operation, in CantabriaUntil now, it has installed 10 buoys at a depth of 40 meters between 1,5 and 3 kilometers from the coast, the plant occupies an area of 2 square kilometers.
The buoys have a power of 1,5 MW, they go up and down by winding and unwinding a cable that moves the generator.
Iberdrola assures that one of its advantages is its safety because it is submerged, another would be its greater durability and according to the company, the environmental impact is minimal.
For its part, in Motrico, the Basque Country, a pilot plant is currently being built where a buoy with a technology called oscillating water column. As the water enters the column, it pushes the air in the column so that it passes through the turbine and increases the pressure inside the column. When the water comes out, the air goes back through the turbine because the ocean side of the turbine has less pressure. The turbine rotates in the same direction and causes the generator to produce electricity.