Linear Permanent Magnet Vernier Generators for Wave Energy Applications: Analysis, Challenges, and Opportunities
Derakhshani, Mohammad Mahdi
Harvesting energy from waves as a substantial resource of renewable energy has attracted much attention in recent years. Linear permanent magnet vernier generators (LPMVGs) have been widely adopted in wave energy applications to extract clean energy from oceans. Linear PM vernier machines perform based on the magnetic gearing effect, allowing them to offer high power/force density at low speeds. The outstanding feature of providing high power capability makes linear vernier generators more advantageous compared to linear PM synchronous counterparts used in wave energy conversion systems. Nevertheless, they inherently suffer from a poor power factor arising from their considerable leakage flux. Various structures and methods have been introduced to enhance their performance and improve their low power factor. In this work, a comparative study of different structures, distinguishable concepts, and operation principles of linear PM vernier machines is presented. Furthermore, recent advancements and innovative improvements have been investigated. They are categorized and evaluated to provide a comprehensive insight into the exploitation of linear vernier generators in wave energy extracting systems. Finally, some significant structures of linear PM vernier generators are modeled using two-dimensional finite element analysis (2D-FEA) to compare their electromagnetic characteristics and survey their performance.