Systematically Creating Breakthroughs - Techno-Economic Design Approaches in Marine Renewables

Friday, March 17, 2017 - 2:30pm
3110 Etcheverry Hall
Mirko Previsic, Principal

RE Vision Consulting

Sacramento, CA


E-201 Ocean Engineering Seminar Series, Spring 2017


2:00 - 2:30pm Beverages & Refreshments

2:30 - 4:00pm Seminar


Marine renewable energy systems are driven by the need to produce electricity at a cost that is competitive in the market place. As such, the design drivers for these systems are different from many other marine projects and it is important to properly understand the trade-offs in the design space benchmarked using appropriate techno-economic approaches.


This presentation will provide an introduction to the techno-economic metrics used in marine renewables and provide a review of the tools and design approaches utilized that lead to a successful design optimization of wave energy converters. It will also review the target competitive metrics that marine renewables will need to attain if they are to become competitive in the renewable energy market place.


Recent optimization studies completed and their outcomes will be shown in the following:


1. Techno-Economic Baselines of four Reference Models developed for the US Depart. of Energy

2. Feed-in Tariff development for the “Nova Scotia Utility”

3. The impact of optimal control on 4 different Wave Energy Device topologies

4. Parametric structural optimization of a deep-water oscillating water column (OWC) device

5. Optimization of the Waveswing device, leading to a 3rd place in the recent wave energy prize competition


While this talk will focus on wave-energy conversion systems, the approaches described are broadly applicable to the optimization of renewable energy systems.



Mirko Previsic is the principal at Re Vision Consulting, a renewable energy consultancy based in Sacramento, CA. He has over 15 years of experience with the design, evaluation and optimization of marine renewable power generation systems, resource assessments, and feasibility studies. Primary area of interest is in cost reduction pathways and economics of renewable energy systems, which touches on technical, supply chain, and economic issues.  In particular, his recent focus has been on techno-economic modeling and system-level optimization of Wave Energy Converters, with a focus on performance optimization through parametric studies and optimal control methods. He graduated in 1994 from the Technology Institute Uster in Switzerland with an Electrical Engineering degree.


Hosted by: Prof. R. W. Yeung (