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Engineers have been trying to make ocean waves a source of energy for decades. Her company finally figured out how.

For founding Eco Wave Power, a technology that turns waves into energy, Inna Braverman is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People of 2020.

Engineers have been trying to make ocean waves a source of energy for decades. Her company finally figured out how.
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When Inna Braverman founded Eco Wave Power, in 2011, wave energy had been largely dismissed as unrealistic. Offshore devices are notoriously costly to install, difficult to insure, prone to breakage, and disruptive to marine life on the ocean floor, alienating environmentalist support. But Braverman, an entrepreneur based in Tel Aviv, Israel, developed a system that operates onshore, connecting giant, paddlelike “floaters” to an existing structure, such as a pier, and capturing energy as those floaters move up and down with waves (they automatically lift when the tide is too high or rough). Eco Wave Power now operates the only grid-connected wave energy array in the world, in Gibraltar, and in 2019 won the United Nations Global Climate Action Award—effectively proving wave power as a viable energy solution. “We solved the main problems that were experienced by most of the offshore wave energy developers,” she says. “Now we’re moving to the next stage, which is building commercial scale, and proving that wave energy not only doesn’t break down and can be built at a good price, but can become profitable and produce significant amounts of electricity.” In March of this year, the company announced that its Gibraltar site will expand further, adding solar cells to the top of the floaters.