U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Angus King, I-Maine, have announced that the University of Maine (UMaine), along with partners Maine Maritime Academy, Sandia National Laboratories and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, received a $983,997 grant from the National Science Foundation to design, develop and construct a multidirectional Wind-Wave generating system called W2.
Once completed, the W2 will be able to simulate wave and wind conditions similar to those found in the Gulf of Maine and elsewhere. By better understanding the effects of waves and wind shears that are typical in the often-inhospitable ocean environment, researchers will be able to develop new methods of capturing renewable energy.
Moreover, the senators say this system will permit scientists to optimize the performance of existing renewable energy devices and provide guidance in the construction of future offshore and coastal infrastructure.
‘Researchers at the University of Maine and their world-class partners have demonstrated ingenuity in seeking new ways to capture Maine's abundant supply of offshore deepwater wind energy through the launch of the nation's first grid-connected offshore floating wind turbine prototype in May,’ Sens. Collins and King said in a joint statement.
‘The construction of the Wind-Wave generating system will provide students and scientists with invaluable information regarding the ocean's interaction with offshore infrastructure as they seek to build on their already-considerable achievements.’