Open-source software can help find the right space for offshore wind turbines

February 15, 2013

Offshore wind has significant potential to help the United States meet its growing energy needs, but the U.S. marine renewable energy industry has lagged behind Europe for decades.

Recent legislation has accelerated renewable development in U.S. waters, particularly along the East Coast, and though technological hurdles exist for industry expansion, an equally critical challenge is finding space for a growing number of turbines in an ocean crowded with fishing, marine transportation and recreational boating.

To help decision makers better understand tradeoffs from ocean policy, scientists need to provide explicit quantitative models of how ocean areas are currently used, and the possible benefits that could be gained by converting that location to .

At this year's annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Robert Griffin, an economist with the Natural Capital Project at Stanford University, will present InVEST, an open source wind energy model that predicts energy production, wind energy value and other key metrics associated with offshore wind energy.

"This model is significant because it is an tool that provides spatially explicit offshore wind energy information relevant to decision makers worldwide for integrated marine spatial planning," Griffin says.

Griffin will detail InVEST in a presentation titled "Modeling What Matters: Quantifying Tradeoffs for Energy, Transportation and Fishing." The presentation will take place on Friday, Feb. 15 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston.

Explore further: LLNL partners with SWAY to launch deep sea offshore wind demonstration

Related Stories

Recycling wind turbines

September 21, 2007

The development of wind power promises much in terms of providing us with renewable energy for the future and wind turbines could be the most effective way to harness that power. Danish researchers now suggest that in order ...

New offshore turbine design to create and store energy

September 28, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- While many are taking to the oceans and trying to find the best ways to harness offshore wind and provide clean energy from renewable sources, the basic design of any wind turbine is that of a windmill. That ...

Germany's first offshore wind farm begins turning

April 27, 2010

The blades began turning at Germany's first offshore wind farm Tuesday, 45 kilometres (28 miles) off the coast in the North Sea, with 12 turbines producing energy for 50,000 households.

Recommended for you

Samsung to disable Note 7 phones in recall effort

December 9, 2016

Samsung announced Friday it would disable its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones in the US market to force remaining owners to stop using the devices, which were recalled for safety reasons.

Swiss unveil stratospheric solar plane

December 7, 2016

Just months after two Swiss pilots completed a historic round-the-world trip in a Sun-powered plane, another Swiss adventurer on Wednesday unveiled a solar plane aimed at reaching the stratosphere.

Solar panels repay their energy 'debt': study

December 6, 2016

The climate-friendly electricity generated by solar panels in the past 40 years has all but cancelled out the polluting energy used to produce them, a study said Tuesday.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.