US Energy Department plans funding call for MHK industry

Illustration (Photo: Pixabay)

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) at the US Department of Energy intends to issue a funding call for marine and hydrokinetic technology advancement and data dissemination sometime soon, not excluding this month (April).

The funding call, planned to be issued on behalf of the Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO), aims to further the development of marine and hydrokinetic (MHK) technologies by reducing costs, accelerating technology, and reducing deployment timelines.

It is anticipated that the call will include three Topic Areas to support the aforementioned objectives, according to EERE’s Notice of Intent.

The goal of Topic Area 1, which concerns early-stage device design research, is to advance technology by providing early stage development and evaluation of next generation wave and tidal/current systems, targeting prototype scale systems that have high potential that can be proven through numerical simulations and testing validation.

The second Topic Area is focused on the design, integration and testing of control systems and power take-off (PTO), aiming to support early stage design of PTO and control systems in parallel. Projects are expected to build and test the PTO with an operational real time control system at a relevant scale in a laboratory and/or tank setting.

Dissemination of Environmental Data and Analyses to Facilitate the Marine Energy Regulatory Process, concentrates on developing tools and methodologies that capture recent advances in the scientific understanding of environmental impacts of marine renewable energy, and make this information widely available in a synthesized and easily digestible format to inform and facilitate Federal and State MHK regulatory processes.

WPTO’s strategy to help catalyze MHK development focuses primarily on technology research and design tools to enable industry to reduce cost and improve performance of MHK technology concepts. This research involves testing proof‐of‐concept systems in laboratory and ocean settings to understand performance characteristics, identify and mitigate reliability risks, and provide data to inform future R&D to improve early‐stage designs across the industry.

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