National Renewable Energy Laboratory Spotlights SeaRAY Preparations

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is one of C-Power’s key partners advancing the SeaRAY autonomous offshore power system (AOPS) to the start of its demonstration at the U.S. Navy’s Wave Energy Test Site in Hawaii this fall.

With the nacelle of the SeaRAY visiting NREL’s Flatirons campus in Colorado for validation and verification testing, the lab wrote a spotlight on SeaRAY preparations and what the AOPS hopes to accomplish.

The global ocean economy is expected to double from $1.5 trillion to $3 trillion by 2030. Powering this economy with renewable energy is critical to protect these vast and vulnerable waters, which house about a million species, 17% of the world’s food supply, and 70% of its oxygen.

To prove the SeaRAY AOPS can help power this so-called blue economy, C-Power partnered with NREL and the U.S. Department of Energy Water Power Technologies Office to prep the device for its first open ocean trial.

“NREL has a critical role in this project,” said Reenst Lesemann, C-Power’s chief executive officer. “They’re not only helping provide the brains of the AOPS but also helping with testing and debugging the system before we get into the water.”

To make sure the SeaRAY AOPS is ready for a six-month oceanic trial at the U.S. Navy Wave Energy Test Site in Hawaii, NREL researchers are simulating rolling ocean movements at the laboratory’s Flatirons Campus in Colorado. With NREL’s novel field data collection and control system, called Modular Ocean Data Acquisition (MODAQ), the team will check that SeaRAY AOPS can operate as intended while rocking with ocean waves.

Read the full story on NREL’s website.