UNH presently has two ongoing wave energy initiatives. In the first, UNH is cooperating with the Healy Wave Energy Converter (WEC) project in which the WEC will be tested under open ocean conditions a site located 1.4 nautical miles south-southwest of White Island, Isles of Shoals, NH. Resembling a cylindrical buoy, this 48 ton, point absorber type WEC has a diameter of 16.5 feet and is 70 feet top-to-bottom with most of its vertical length under water. It will be held in position by a 3-leg mooring. Since this is a research project, the energy will be dissipated by on-board resisters, and there will be no power transmission cables involved. Power converted and wave forcing will be recorded over a one-year test period. UNH is actively involved in re-establishing the necessary permits and computer modeling of the system in storm waves. In the second area of activity, UNH students are developing a WEC for directly pumping nutrient-rich water at depth to the surface to enhance the productivity of a kelp farm. It may also be used to bring cold bottom water up to cool floating finfish net pens during the summer. Supported in part by Sea Grant through the Ocean Projects course, the team plans to field test the system this spring. For more information on these projects, please contact Professor Rob Swift.
In fall 2012, the Center for Ocean Engineering worked with Neptune Wave Power of Dallas, Texas to analyze their wave energy converter and perform a series of field tests. Their system was first analyzed with UNH software to optimize the mooring configuration and assist with the proper selection of gear. The buoy was then deployed 10 km southeast of Portsmouth, NH in 52 meters of water at the permitted UNH Offshore Wind/Wave Test Site. To monitor the forces acting on the buoy, an environmental monitoring buoy was deployed. The system was recovered and information gained from the project is being used to calibrate/verify software predictions to better understand these types of devices. Contact: Professor Kenneth Baldwin for more information
The University of New Hampshire Center for Ocean Renewable Energy (UNH-CORE) tested an industry developed hydrokinetic turbine at Muskeget Channel in Massachusetts on the Center’s 35 foot Tidal Energy Test Platform. The test team included Dr. Martin Wosnik, Dr. Judson DeCew, Matthew Rowell, and Toby Dewhurst as well as others from FloDesign Inc. and the University of Massachuset; Dartmouth. Contact Professor Martin Wosnik for more information.