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Lockheed Martin Pioneers Ocean Energy in China

RATE THIS! +41
Posted in Science on 5th Apr, 2014 12:29 AM by AlexMuller

A few years ago, Lockheed Martin was working to build a pilot plant to demonstrate a renewable energy technology called ocean thermal energy conversion near the Hawaiian island of Oahu. They wanted to get funding from the U.S. Navy for the project and to cable the electricity straight to the naval base at Pearl Harbor.

 
Now Lockheed is designing that 10-megawatt pilot plant, but not in American waters. Instead, the facility will be off the coast of southern China, and Lockheed’s customer is a private Chinese company that develops resorts and luxury housing.
 
Over the years Lockheed has approached various potential partners, says Rob Varley, the company’s OTEC project manager.
 
Building an offshore energy station at commercial scale is an expensive proposition, particularly when it’s the first time the technology is being tried out. Lockheed won’t release the cost of the project, but outside experts estimate that a 10-MW facility would cost roughly US $300 million to $500 million.
 
However, experts say that a full-scale 100-MW plant would be more competitive at just $1.2 billion.
 
“The biggest challenge has been to get the gold and start the project,” says Varley, but in terms of engineering, he says, “I don’t see any showstoppers at this point.”
 
That’s not surprising, since the company has been working on OTEC since the 1970s, and the technology hasn’t changed drastically since then. OTEC systems make use of the temperature differential in tropical areas between warm surface water and cold deep water. In most systems, ammonia, which has a very low boiling point, passes through a heat exchanger containing the warm water.
 
The ammonia is vaporized and used to turn a turbine, and then it’s cycled past the cold water to recondense. This is a renewable energy technology with the rare capacity to supply base-load power, as water temperatures are fairly stable.

Tags: energyrenewable energyLockheed Martinoceanocean thermal

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+3
Any new ideas and, more importantly, proposals for their implementation, with regard to renewable energy should be most welcome and supported. Energy and is safe and cost effective will rescue our future
2 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+1
Yes, they are optimistic and see their current plans as steps toward a much more ambitious goal: utility-scale plants. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+3
Lockheed and its Chinese client company-whose diverse portfolio includes resort and housing developments-are currently working on site selection and that they’ll start designing a facility this year to suit the specific conditions at that site. This is going to happen and could be a big influence on others to develop similar projects! Very hopeful. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+2
Others have been trying to build megawatt-scale facilities for decades, but several ambitious projects have failed to materialize. So why should it be different this decade? It seems that finally there’s "a convergence of favorable conditions" - I hope it works this time! Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+2
A good news for renewable energy! Another source- solar power is also being reconsidered and new ideas are emerging. A major complaint about renewable energy sources, including solar power, is that they don’t generate energy all the time. Recently, we found out that " US Navy Explores Beaming Solar Power From Space"! Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-05
+0
Any new ideas and, more importantly, proposals for their implementation, with regard to renewable energy should be most welcome and supported. Energy and is safe and cost effective will rescue our future Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2015-07-29
+0
I ordered this for my yoegunst son's bedroom and he loves it! The colors are vibrant and there is a lot of interesting different parts to the poster. We're both glad that to have it, and it looks terrific with his dark wood/ Asian theme bedroom. Reply


 

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