At a Glance

CalWave Fact Sheet

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CalWave Power Technologies Inc. is a California-based wave energy developer that was founded out of UC Berkeley in 2014.

Our technology breaks through the fundamental challenges of unlocking wave power.

Our award-winning, proprietary wave energy converter (WEC) technology is called the xWave™.

The xWave™ is built on the game-changing industry advancements in which CalWave was awarded for through the US Department of Energy’s Wave Energy Prize. No other wave energy technology has high efficiency and wave load mitigation united in one architecture. The xWave™ achieves highest efficiency by operating fully autonomously and fully submerged which allows for protection from aggressive swells and storms, while also permitting energy capture from multiple degrees of freedom.

From a technical standpoint, what makes our technology special is that we’ve integrated novel wave load mechanism into the design similar to Pitch and Yaw control in modern wind turbines. Compared to a set as-is geometry once the device is manufactured, we can actively change the geometry of the wave absorber body to not only operate efficiently in small waves – but also to continue operation in severe sea states encompassing very large waves.

These landmark features enable for high performance and survivability at lowest cost which should lead to affordable energy prices once available to the market.

Additionally, the xWave™ encapsulates other critical aspects that bode well with the needs of varied end-users. Scalable in both design and functionality, energy farms that utilize the technology can supply coastal communities with anywhere from 5 to over 500 MW of local power. Further, the xWave™ achieves a minimum 40% capacity factor alone. Studies show that when co-located with offshore wind, over 80% capacity factor can potentially be reached. The device is projected to be able to withstand over 20 years of use in open-ocean and has been designed to survive 100-year storm events. With operation and maintenance processes occurring on the surface via hot-swap capabilities, incurred costs are also predicted to be lower than that of offshore wind. The technology has also been deemed to have an acceptable environmental impact according to the latest State of Science report.

We have achieved significant milestones and work collaboratively with a range of key industry players.

A full list of our partners and supporters can be found here.

Our project pipeline allows us to scale up efficiently towards commercialization.

We successfully deployed our wave energy converter technology off the coast of San Diego in September 2021, marking California’s first at-sea, long-duration wave energy pilot. While CalWave’s pilot was contracted to operate for six months, a four month extension was granted by the U.S. Department of Energy for further data collection after the system surpassed initial expectations. The pilot unit, named x1, has now been recovered and decommissioned as of July 2022. Findings will be used to inform CalWave’s next grid- connected deployment.

Following our pilot demonstration, CalWave will build a 100 kW version of the xWave™, called x100, and deploy the unit at PacWave South, the nation’s first accredited, grid-connected, pre-permitted, open-water wave energy test facility. This demonstration is scheduled to take place in 2024 and is the next step for enabling commercialization of our technology.

Learn more about our projects here.