Skip to content

CEFOW - Clean Energy from Ocean Waves

The European Commission’s research and innovation programme Horizon 2020 granted €17 million in funding for the Clean Energy From Ocean Waves (CEFOW) research project coordinated by Fortum.

CEFOW Project

The Clean Energy From Ocean Waves (CEFOW) project aims to deploy advanced multiple wave energy converters (WECs) with improved power generation capability and demonstrate that they are able to survive challenging sea conditions over a period of several years. In addition, a realistic roadmap will be developed for cost reduction to bring the levelised cost of wave power down nearer to commercially viable level in the near future. CEFOW also has a fantastic starting point in that the devices will be deployed at Wave Hub, the world's most technologically advanced test centre for offshore renewable energy technologies, where all the required infrastructure, including grid connection and permits, are already in place.

Europe is today unquestionably leading the way in wave power development. The most advanced wave power demonstrations have been performed in the UK and showed the feasibility of power generation with single device deployments and MW-scale performance within several testing periods of several years. The next step beyond this is to deploy arrays of wave devices.

CEFOW is aiming to be the first project to grid connect an array of wave devices in the UK and to create an efficient supply chain to support larger wave power projects in the future.

The Penguin Wave Device

Image of Wello's Penguin Wave Energy Device

The CEFOW Project will see three of Wello's Penguin wave energy converter deployed at the Wave Hub test site.  The single Penguin wave device which has been successfully tested in Scotland since 2013 will be transfered to Wave Hub for deployment in early summer 2016.  A further two devices will be manucfactured to complete the wave energy array.

The Penguin device, which is a simple and durable design with no external moving parts, has an exceptionally good capability to convert wave movement into power. The power generation is based on converting the movement of the waves to rotational kinetic movement inside the device by using the asymmetric shape of the hull.  As the Penguin is based on continuous rotational movement, the forces and the thus the wear on the components is reduced, and the power takeout is increased.

The Penguin can be upgraded to higher performance simply by increasing the weight of the rotator and optimising the control system.  

CEFOW Objectives

The CEFOW project aims to demonstrate advanced ocean WEC technology to increase the speed of wave power development and decrease the levelised cost of ocean energy by 30%. This target can be reached by:

  • Improving the availability and performance of the Penguin wave device,
  • Tailoring the solution with low life-cycle cost in mind for long term deployment and
  • Creating a cost efficient supply chain to support much larger wave energy deployments in the future.


The five year demonstration project at Wave Hub will offer unique and valuable information not only about the weak points of different components but also the real cost levels of long term marine operations, component price development and decommissioning costs.

Environmental Research

To understand how the Penguin devices interact with marine organisms, three universities (Exeter, Plymouth & Uppsala) have created a collaborative environmental work package within the CEFOW Project. As part of this work, extensive baseline data already collected at the Wave Hub deployment site will be used.  The Universities of Exeter and Plymouth have undertaken research at Wave Hub since 2008/9 in a preparation for multi-device deployments (arrays). Research will focus on wildlife above sea level, underwater and on the seabed and results will reveal any positive or negative impacts associated with the deployment of the wave energy devices at Wave Hub.  The environmental research taking place during the CEFOW Project will also take advantage of the unique situation of the staged deployment of multiple Penguin wave energy converters at the site. 

CEFOW Funding

The European Commission’s research and innovation programme Horizon 2020 granted €17 million of the project’s total €24.5 million budget.

For more information about Horizon 2020, part of the European Commission Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) click here.

CEFOW Partners


  • Clean Energy from Ocean Waves LeafletDownload
Image of Fortum logo Image of Wello logo Image of European Commission Emblem Image of Green Marine UK logo Image of Wave Hub test site Image of University of Exeter Logo Image of Plymouth University Marine Institute logo Image of Uppsala University logo Image of Mojo Maritime Logo
CEFOW Partners Icon

CEFOW Partners

Click here to learn more about the companies involved in the Clean Energy from Ocean Waves (CEFOW) project.

Read more
CEFOW News Icon


Click here to read all the news about the Clean Energy from Ocean Waves (CEFOW) project.

Read more
Contact CEFOW Icon

Contact CEFOW

Click here to make contact with the Clean Energy from Ocean Waves (CEFOW) project.

Read more