With more than 50% of the population living within 50 miles of coastlines, there is vast potential to provide clean, renewable electricity to communities and cities across the United States by harnessing the energy from waves, tides, and ocean currents. Wave Energy Conversion (WEC) devices are designed to harness the available energy contained in waves, and turn it into usable electricity.
Current WEC concepts are not yet cost competitive with other means of generating electricity, and significant opportunities exist to reduce the associated costs so wave power can contribute to the nation’s clean energy supply.
The Department of Energy (DOE) sponsored Wave Energy Prize intends to double the state-of-the-art performance within two years by encouraging the development of WEC devices that capture more energy from ocean waves, ultimately reducing the cost of wave energy, making it more competitive with traditional energy solutions.
The Wave Energy Prize provides an opportunity for participants to:
- Win a substantial monetary prize.
- Receive seed funding to support the building of a 1/20th scale model WEC device for testing.
- Participate in two rounds of valuable WEC model testing at no cost to the Finalist Teams, one of which is at the Navy’s Maneuvering and Seakeeping (MASK) Basin in Carderock, MD, the nation’s premier wave testing facility.
- Benefit from many opportunities for recognition so that it is worthwhile to compete, and not just for first place.
- Contribute to the development of innovative, green, alternative-energy technologies that can contribute to the nation’s energy independence.