Chile inaugurates marine energy R&D center MERIC

Chilean Marine Energy Research and Innovation Center (MERIC) has been inaugurated last Friday, June 17, in the presence of the country’s Minister for Energy Máximo Pacheco.

MERIC was established with the support of Corfo, a Chilean investment and development agency, to explore the marine energy opportunities in the country.

The Center will gather researchers to support work related to marine resource assessment, site characterization, bio-fouling, bio-corrosion, environmental and social impact, and technology adaptation to extreme ocean conditions.

The other line of R&D will involve the development of tools to test and adapt marine renewable energy technologies to the country’s natural conditions.

Eduardo Bitran, Corfo Executive Vice President, said: “Chile has excellent natural conditions for the development of energy from the seas that we must seize. Today we have a great opportunity not only to investigate tidal power, but to develop related industries and services with this technology. This center has the Government’s commitment to co-finance the development of applied research and technology in our country.”

The center was built by the consortium consisting of DCNS and Enel Green Power, with the support from Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Austral University of Chile, Chile Inria Foundation, Fundacion Chile, and Chilectra.

From 2019 onwards, MERIC is expected to have a consolidated infrastructure and experience to provide services to local and international industry who wish to test MRE technologies in the Chilean marine environment.

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