Hydrokinetic energy developer Ocean Power Technologies Inc. has entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate to perform a new round of in-ocean tests with its APB-350 PowerBuoy wave energy system.
OPT's latest study will see the company redeploy one of its PowerBuoy units off the coast of New Jersey in hopes of demonstrating the effectiveness of its "long duration maritime vessel detection platform,"
The program is also being funded in part by the Maryland Technology Development Corporation, which awarded OPT a US$75,000 grant via a joint technology transfer initiative to show how the PowerBuoy can be used with multiple surveillance technologies.
The study will build on previous research conducted through the U.S. Navy's Littoral Expeditionary Autonomous PowerBuoy (LEAP) program, which came to a conclusion in February.
OPT says it will use the experience it gained during the LEAP program to demonstrate an "enhanced tracking technology" that will allow it to collect ocean data and perform surveillance duties simultaneously.
HydroWorld.com reported in August that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission had issued a 35-year license to OPT for a 1.5 MW installation off the coast of Reedsport, Ore.
When complete, the project will be the first commercial-scale wave power plant in the U.S.