The Israeli firm SDE Energy has defied the larger wave energy corporations with its sleek wave energy designs. Suited for places that aren’t on the list of top wave-producers such as China, India, and Israel, his technology is increasingly competitive as oil prices soar. Now Kenya, which is striving to become East Africa’s most power industrial nation, and no stranger to alternative energy, has commissioned the firm to conduct tests on its coast with the intention to build a 100MW wave energy plant.Kenya’s Ministry of Energy approved SDE’s plans to work with the local company Sea Wave Gen in order to build the plant. This furthers the country’s aim to produce approximately 1300 MW of their energy supply with renewable energy.
Given the escalating costs of fossil fuels, SDE Energy’s technology is becoming increasingly financially viable. It is also competitive in the renewable department. One wave energy plant costs almost half as much as a coal or wind-power plant the same size and fives times less than a solar plant.
None of the experts consider Kenya’s Indian Ocean locale ideal for harvesting wave energy, but the company has managed to exploit an overlooked market. While large firms in the North Sea and elsewhere are developing massive wave energy plants, SDE is focusing on smaller plants.
For over one year, SDE’s plant in Jaffa has produced a steady 40kWh. While fairly insignificant in the broader scheme, there is certainly opportunity for growth. Plus, a diverse energy portfolio is the healthiest energy portfolio.
“The system harnesses wave’s speed, height, depth, rise and fall and the flow beneath to produce energy. The model has been approved by experienced engineers,” according to the company’s Managing Director Mr. Shmuel Ovadia.
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