Methodology to Calculate the ACE and HPQ Metrics Used in the Wave Energy Prize

Frederick Driscoll, Jochem Weber, Dale Jenne, Robert Thresher, Lee Fingersh, Dianna Bull, Ann Dallman, Budi Gunawan, Kelley Ruehl, David Newborn, Miguel Quintero, Alison LaBonte, Darshan Karwat, Scott Beatty

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


The U.S. Department of Energy's Wave Energy Prize Competition encouraged the development of innovative deep-water wave energy conversion technologies that at least doubled device performance above the 2014 state of the art. Because levelized cost of energy (LCOE) metrics are challenging to apply equitably to new technologies where significant uncertainty exists in design and operation, the prize technical team developed a reduced metric as proxy for LCOE, which provides an equitable comparison of low technology readiness level wave energy converter (WEC) concepts. The metric is called 'ACE' which is short for the ratio of the average climate capture width to the characteristic capital expenditure. The methodology and application of the ACE metric used to evaluate the performance of the technologies that competed in the Wave Energy Prize are explained in this report.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages47
StatePublished - 2018

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5000-70592


  • ACE
  • wave energy converter
  • Wave Energy Prize Competition
  • WEC


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