A reboot for wave energy

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Science  06 May 2016:
Vol. 352, Issue 6286, pp. 637-638
DOI: 10.1126/science.352.6286.637

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The United Kingdom has ample resources for ocean energy and has long been a leader in wave energy research. After the bankruptcies of two pioneering wave energy companies, the Scottish government has gone back to the drawing board. A new agency is funding crosscutting research, for example in materials and control systems, that could help a range of wave energy devices. The government program is also trying to improve technology transfer and build investor confidence by benchmarking progress. Companies are trying out novel designs, such as a giant rubber tube and polymers that generate electricity when flexed. Another goal is to help devices submerge to avoid dangerous waves.