As the world considers alternative ways of generating energy, engineering giant IHI Corp. on July 7 unveiled an “ocean current power generator” prototype. The device, which harnesses ocean energy using currents found in oceans, will be tested in a demonstration experiment off the coast of Kuchinoshima, an island in Kagoshima Prefecture. It follows an experiment relating to wave-power generation that Mitsui Engineering and Shipbuilding Co. announced in April. Given Japan’s lack of energy resources, the emergence of alternative-energy projects such as these ones carried out by IHI and Mitsui are gaining attention. In the case of IHI, the ocean-driven machinery consists of propellers in the sea that are rotated by ocean currents, which in turn move turbines that generate power. It is a reliable form of energy as the fairly constant speed and direction of ocean currents means that energy can be generated throughout the year. Ocean energy differs considerably to other forms of renewable energy such as solar and wind power, which are both heavily dependent on climate.
Mainichi 8th July 2017 read more »