CETO is a wave energy technology that harnesses the power of the ocean waves to generate electricity or produce desalinated water. CETO is owned and operated by Carnegie Wave Energy Limited (ASX: CWE), the Australian ASX-listed clean tech developer. Carnegie will own and operate all commercial CETO wave farms in the Southern Hemisphere. In the Northern Hemisphere CETO wave farms will be joint ventures with CETO technology licensee, EDF Energies Nouvelles SA (EDF EN), the renewable subsidiary of French energy giant Électricité de France (EDF). The technology development is being demonstrated at commercial scale in 2010 off Garden Island in Western Australia, home of Australia's largest naval base HMAS Stirling. Subsequent projects may happen at La Reunion Island and off British Columbia where Government grants have been awarded.

Named after a Greek ocean goddess, the CETO system distinguishes itself from other traditional wave energy devices by being a fully submerged, pumping technology with the power generated onshore by a standard hydro-electric turbine system.

Submerged buoys are moved up and down by the ocean swell, driving pumps which pressurize seawater that is delivered ashore by a pipeline. Once onshore, the high-pressure seawater is used to drive hydro turbines, generating zero-emission electricity. Traditionally, wave technologies are characterized as offshore, floating power stations.

The high-pressure seawater is also used to supply a reverse osmosis desalination plant, creating zero-emission freshwater. Currently, seawater desalination plants are large emitters of greenhouse gases due to the amount of energy required to drive grid-connected pumps that deliver the high pressure seawater to reverse osmosis membranes which remove the salt from the seawater.

Other wave energy & CETO characteristics
  • Wave energy is a renewable, zero emission source of power.
  • 60% of the world lives within 60 kilometers of a coast, minimising transmission issues.
  • Since water is about 800 times denser than air, the energy density of waves exceeds wind many times over, dramatically increasing the amount of energy available for harvesting.
  • Waves are predictable in advance, making it easy to match supply and demand.
  • CETO sits underwater, moored to the sea floor, meaning there is no visual impact.
  • CETO units operate in deep water, away from breaking waves. The waves regenerate once they pass the CETO units, meaning there is no impact on popular surfing sites.
  • CETO units are designed to operate in harmony with the waves, rather than attempting to resist them. This means there is no need for massive steel and concrete structures to be built.
  • CETO is the only wave energy technology that produces fresh water directly from seawater by magnifying the pressure variations in ocean waves.
  • Any combination of power and water can be achieved from 100% power to 100% water.
  • CETO contains no oils, lubricants or offshore electrical components. It is built from components with a known sub-sea life of over 30 years.
  • CETO units act like artificial reefs, because of the way they attract marine life.