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UMaine Center in Partnership to Gather Deepwater Offshore Hub Height Wind Measurements in the Gulf of Maine

AEWC

The University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, NRG Systems, Inc., AWS Truepower LLC, UMaine’s Physical Oceanography Group, and Leosphere SAS have established a research and development partnership to gather deepwater hub-height wind measurements in the Gulf of Maine. UMaine will design and build a floating system to house a modified WINDCUBE v2 Offshore LIDAR Remote Sensor, which has been adapted to a dynamic marine environment. The floating system, which incorporates a proven LIDAR (light detection and ranging) system that detects wind conditions using laser technology up to 200 meters above the ocean surface, is based on buoy technology developed and tested by UMaine’s Physical Oceanography Group over the past decade in the Gulf of Maine and abroad. AWS Truepower will conduct a validation campaign to validate the data collected by the floating system. The buoy is scheduled for deployment in 2013 at the UMaine Deepwater Offshore Wind Test Site, an offshore wind and marine hydrokinetic device test site operated by the Advanced Structures and Composites Center and located 10 miles off the coast of Maine, near the island of Monhegan.

“This partnership between the UMaine and our private industry leaders will advance resource assessment technology and will help propel the U.S. forward in deepwater offshore wind technology development,” said Habib Dagher, director of the Advanced Structures and Composites Center, a research and development facility at UMaine. “Floating LIDAR technology, once fully validated, will provide us with a cost-effective method to assess the wind resource in areas traditionally off-limits to offshore wind developers.”

With funding from the Maine Technology Institute and the U.S. Department of Energy, UMaine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center is leading this effort to enable cost-effective measurements hub-height winds in deepwater where fixed-based towers are not feasible. The center is actively developing and testing innovative floating wind turbines for deployment in deepwater. The center’s floating foundation design, scheduled to deploy in 2013, will be the first grid-connected floating offshore wind turbine in the United States. For more information, visit composites.umaine.edu and DeepCwind.org.

NRG Systems is an independently-owned company that has served the global renewable energy industry for 30 years. Its measurement equipment, turbine health monitoring systems, and LIDAR remote sensors can be found in 150 countries on every continent, serving electric utilities, renewable energy developers, turbine manufacturers, consultants and research institutes. For more information, visit nrgsystems.com.

AWS Truepower is one of the world’s leading providers of renewable energy solutions to developers, investors, utilities, and governments. For more information, visit awstruepower.com.

Contact: Elizabeth Viselli, (207) 581-2831; Jessica Bloch, (207) 581-3777 or jessica.bloch@umit.maine.edu

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