Ocean Current Measurements and Energy Potential in the Islands of Andaman
The hydrokinetic energy potential of at Indian oceans remains largely untapped. The attempts toward utilizing this resource have made recently in India. However, those were mostly limited to academic studies. The current speeds along the Indian coastline are lesser as compared to other locations in the world. However, few places in India like the Gulf of Khambhat, Sundarbans, and Andaman and Nicobar Islands have currents due to tides. To initiate technology development to develop the hydrokinetic turbines and electric generator suitable for Indian sea climate, surveying of such location is essential. Early in 2008, when NIOT was executing the freshwater transportation project between islands, the current was visibly observed at Macpherson Strait in Andaman Island. Hence, the detailed current measurement exercise was carried out at the nearby Viper Island and Macpherson Strait. Even though the surface current was high on Viper Island, the current measured at 1–2 m below the sea water level was as low as 0.5 m/s (since it is a closed channel), whereas in Macpherson Strait it was observed as high as 2 m/s. In this location, the in-house developed prototype of ϕ 0.8 × 1 m straight bladed turbine was tested in floating configuration. In this trial, the current measurement was carried out over a period of time. The occurrences of current were plotted from these measured current data. From these occurrence data, the maximum available annual hydrokinetic energy is in the order of 4.8 MWh/m2 at this location. This paper focuses the suitable locations for ocean current turbine installations and current availability on Viper Island and Macpherson Strait of Andaman, India.
KeywordsOcean current energy Tidal Current Ocean current turbines Ocean current resource assessment Acoustic Doppler current profiler
Thanks are due to the Ministry of Earths Science, Government of India and Team members of the Energy and Freshwater, NIOT for the continuous encouragement and support.
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