Control co-design and uncertainty analysis of the LUPA’s PTO using WecOptTool




control co-design, optimization, power take-off


Control co-design has been shown to significantly improve the performance of wave energy converters (WEC). By considering the control and WEC design concurrently, the space searched by the optimization routine is greatly expanded which results in better performing devices. Recently, an open-source WEC co-design code, WecOptTool, was released to perform control co-design research and facilitate its adoption in the community. In this study, we use WecOptTool to perform control co-optimization and uncertainty analysis of the LUPA device. The Laboratory Upgrade Point Absorber (LUPA) is a new open-source laboratory-scale WEC that provides a platform for testing new concepts, innovating control schemes, and validating numerical models. The LUPA can be adjusted to different configurations, including changing the number of bodies, the degrees of freedom (DOF), the float and spar geometry, and the diameter of the drive sprocket pulley in the power take off (PTO) system, as well as providing different control algorithms and input waves. The drive sprocket diameter influences the torque vs speed of the generator, which allows for more flexibility in operating under different wave conditions or with different control schemes. In this study we optimize the drive sprocket diameter, while considering the optimal control algorithm for each potential design, to identify the optimal diameter for electric power production at the PacWave South WEC test site. This case study demonstrates several new capabilities of WecOptTool including a multi-body multi-DOF system and multi-directional irregular waves. The PTO dynamics are modeled using first principle methods for a parametrized model of the mechanical subcomponents in combination with generator model obtained using a power-invariant Park transform. The case-study will be made available to serve as a design tool along the LUPA hardware. Users can readily use this model to perform their own design optimization prior to testing with the physical LUPA device. Finally, we use the automatic differentiation capability of WecOptTool to perform a sensitivity and uncertainty analysis of the LUPA device.



How to Cite

C. Michelen Strofer, “Control co-design and uncertainty analysis of the LUPA’s PTO using WecOptTool”, Proc. EWTEC, vol. 15, Sep. 2023.



Grid integration, power take-off and control


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