Lagoon partially filled, "full-sized waves soon" etc…
You remember the hoo-ha last year when the former world champ Joel Parkinson flew to Central Queensland to test the full-sized prototype of the Occy and Barton Lynch-endorsed wave pool.
The waves were very small, one-to-two feet using a generous ruler, but the reveal was stymied when the giant plunger buckled while operating at only fifty percent capacity.
Surf Lakes said the failure was a manufacturing fault, that a new part was being built and that the Yeppoon prototype would be operational, again, by the end of January 2019.
Fast-forward to mid-June and it appears the tank is inching closer to having another swing at producing waves.
The company reports:
The buzz around Surf Lakes’ full-scale Research and Development facility in Yeppoon is building as the onsite engineers have completed the repairs and have now moved into preliminary testing. The repaired structure is much stronger than it was during Phase 1 testing, in October of 2018. On top of this, the team have been making many other improvements to allow for much more detailed monitoring of the machinery. This will enable the Surf Lakes crew to access information swiftly, relating to stress placed upon various components. It will also allow the team to better understand efficiencies.
In breaking news… earlier this week the tap was turned on, filling the lagoon partially, so initial systems testing can take place!
Dry commissioning has now begun and is due to be completed this weekend, after which the lagoon will be filled to the brim in preparation for full commissioning.
This is a major milestone for the team as we inch closer to Phase 2 surf testing.
Can the engineering work?
The shaper, yet-to-be-realised wavepool inventor and theoretician Greg Webber, whom you’ve read about here, here, here, here, here and here, says the design is fundamentally flawed and that unless the plunger is “over-engineered to a silly level” they’re either going to have a “very weak type of wave” or the driveshaft is going to snap again.