Newsletters & Press
For Immediate Release
Wednesday November 22, 2017
Contact: Maggie Merrill, MRECo Communications Manager, 617.306.2764
Tidal Energy Test Site Installation Completed in Cape Cod Canal
The first of its kind in the US, the Bourne Tidal Test Site (BTTS) was installed in the Cape Cod Canal during the past two weeks. Today, the day before Thanksgiving the barge, owned by AGM Marine, Inc. will pull up its moorings and be towed back to New Bedford, leaving the BTTS to stand ready for business.
AGM Marine (Mashpee and New Bedford), drove three piles in the first three days and assembled the structure on top of the piles. In the past two days, the work platform was secured along with the winch that will power the lifting member that turbines will be attached to. The structure is now secure in the water off the Railroad Bridge and the US Army Corps of Engineers’ Cape Cod Canal Field Office.
The structure was built at MassTank (Middleboro, MA,). They are experienced at manufacturing steel tanks and large structures for all sorts of applications including marine and heavy industrial uses.
The next step for the test site will be to install the data acquisition, processing and transmission system atop the platform. Engineers from Impact Labs (New Bedford, MA) will be working out there in the weeks to come to analyze and test the systems. On the heels of that work, University of Rhode Island engineers have expressed interest in deploying one of their Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers to collect data that will enable them to precisely map the water velocity variations during several tidal cycles. This information will be extremely helpful for future operations.
MRECo is actively seeking tidal device designers who require a place to get their equipment in the water to test performance and energy output. What’s unique about this test stand is that it is pre-permitted, easily accessed by small boat or crane from shore, and can be customized. The water velocity is in the 4 knot range which will enable developers who are aiming toward areas with higher water velocities such as the Bay of Fundy for example, to make invaluable design improvements before scaling up.
Several turbine developers have expressed interest in using this site to obtain data on their devices that are being aimed at remote, portable applications such as replacing diesel power generation for islands or for site specific energy generation.
We also welcome those who have expressed interest in using the site to evaluate corrosion effects, biofouling in high currents, environmental impacts of turbines and much more.
The BTTS is the latest addition to the New England Marine Energy Development System (NEMEDS) which is a network of testing facilities located in a 100 mile radius. These test facilities will help tidal energy device designers obtain valuable information that will enable them to scale up and commercialize more efficiently.
Contact John Miller, Executive Director, MRECo to schedule time at the site. firstname.lastname@example.org; 508-728-5825
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MRECo is a nonprofit organization that educates and involves all stakeholders (academic, industry, governmental/regulatory and public interest groups) to provide the sustainable development of renewable energy in New England waters.
Massachusetts Seaport Economic Council funded the project to support the emergence of tidal energy in New England waters.
Local representatives, Third Barnstable District State Representative David T. Vieira (R- East Falmouth) Congressman Keating have been very supportive of the project since its inception.
The Army Corps of Engineers have been very helpful in providing secure access to view and access the site as appropriate.
# # #
After several environmental studies and careful review by multiple agencies, the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo) has received final approval from the US Army Corps of Engineers to install the Bourne Tidal Test Site within the Cape Cod Canal. “We are very pleased the Corps of Engineers has determined that the Bourne Tidal Test Site will have no impact on the critical mission of the Cape Cod Canal and the local environment”,said John Miller, Executive Director of the MRECo.
Funding for the test site was provided by the Seaport Economic Council. The site is located well outside the commercial channel and tucked into an accessible spot near the railroad bridge on the mainland side of the canal.
Water velocity has been measured at over 2 meters/second (4 knots) on the maximum tidal cycle in both directions, enough to turn different types of tidal turbines to test their efficiency, power output, robustness and more. Turbines of up to 3 meters can be tested with vertical lift provided for easy access.
MRECo expects to install the platform in November and is accepting proposals for testing in the spring of 2018. Organizations, individuals, companies, and research institutions that would be interested in using the site for testing their own tidal energy devices and/or marine and remote sensors should contact John Miller at: email@example.com; 508.728.5825
Area within Muskeget Channel that has been tested for tidal and current energy production.
MRECo Seeking Turbine for the Muskeget Channel
(Marion, MA) The good news is that the current does not run as fast in Muskeget Channel as anecdotal accounts would have you believe. The turbulent waters between Martha’s Vineyard and Muskeget Island (a small uninhabited island off Nantucket) have been considered dangerous to pleasure boaters due to torrents of water that flow there. Ten years ago, the town of Edgartown wanted to pursue clean energy solutions for their community and the prospect of capturing just a little bit of that fast current that roils eastward of Chappaquiddick would be something to achieve. The clean energy committee worked with various parties to conduct resource and environmental studies to characterize the area and to locate a spot where the conditions would favor tidal or current energy production. Since 2013 the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative of New England, Inc. (MRECo) has led this effort.
Earlier this summer, MRECo, worked with partners to conduct additional resource assessments. WaterCube (Daniel Island, SC) conducted water velocity profile surveys of the area and located areas where the current flows up to 2m/second on all tidal cycles.
( To see studies completed to date: http://www.mrec.umassd.edu/resourcecenter/muskegettidalproject)
MRECo is now reaching out to tidal developers worldwide to find the best technology for the channel. So far over thirty turbine developers have been contacted and 25% of those have entered discussions with MRECo.
For more information, please contact: John Miller, Executive Director, 508-728-5825; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Call for Abstracts: 2018 AGU Ocean Sciences Meeting, Feb. 11-16, 2018 Portland, OR
Submission Deadline: 6 September 2017, 11:59 P.M. EDT
Session ID: 24443: Ocean Renewable Energy: Resource Characterization, Environmental Impacts, Societal Interactions.
Primary Chair: M Reza Hashemi, University of Rhode Island, Department of Ocean Engineering and Graduate School of Oceanography, Narragansett, RI, United States
Co-chairs: Simon P Neill, Bangor University, Bangor, United Kingdom, Zhaoqing Yang, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Seattle, WA, United States and Jeremy Potter, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Department of the Interior, Camarillo, CA, United States
The ocean represents a vast and largely untapped renewable energy resource that could be harnessed to support sustainable development while reducing carbon emissions. However, much research is required within the oceanographic community, in collaboration with other disciplines, to characterize ocean resources, and to assess the environmental impacts of ocean renewable energy systems. This session seeks contributions spanning a broad range of topics related to ocean renewable energy (offshore wind, wave, ocean current, tidal) research such as resource assessment, instrumentation, feedbacks between power extraction and the resource, and optimization at array or regional scales.
Contributions regarding potential environmental impacts (physical/biological), and societal interactions (e.g., social acceptance) are also invited. For instance, research methods, plans, and results from global investigations into field techniques, statistical modeling, and integrative mapping used to assess the impacts of offshore renewable energy system on presence, distribution, migration, dispersal, and/or abundance of marine species at local and regional scales. We also invite reports of research into the potential or existing effects such as the presence of artificial habitat, noise, electromagnetic field emission, and species barrier or displacement, at specific sites in the marine environment.
Information Contact: Maggie Merrill Communications and Marketing Director, Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (email@example.com)
Data Transmission Tests Underway in Advance of Tidal Power Test Site
(Bourne, MA) Engineers associated with the Bourne Tidal Test Site (BTTS) have been field testing a simulation of the data acquisition system that will be installed on the actual tidal turbine test structure. BTTS is going through its last paces for permitting and once the US Army Corps of Engineers, USACE, signs off, the actual test structure will be installed.
To enable tidal device designers and developers to understand how their turbine is performing in the Cape Cod Canal, they will need to know what the current velocity is during all tide cycles. In order to do that, a team of talented engineers, inventors and scientists are collaborating to see firsthand how fast the water is moving in the Cape Cod Canal and how much power one might be able to harness once a turbine is installed.
There have been several small scale demonstrations done in waters near Buzzards Bay, using a series of small parts and home spun resources to show how data from the FSI ACM Current Meter can be collected , processed and transmitted via sophisticated telemetry to computers anywhere in the world.
The real time current data was captured by an ACM-PLUS-200 acoustic current meter from Falmouth Scientific Inc.(Cataumet, MA) FSI VP of Sales & Marketing, Carl Mancuso stated, “we are happy to work on this important application for our technology. Ocean energy operations worldwide require precise and reliable current speed and direction readings. We welcome the opportunity to contribute to the establishment of the BTTS”.
FSI’s ACM-Plus-200 is measuring current in meters per second. That data is then being processed using software provided by piRshared (Wareham, MA). That “scrubbed” data will eventually be transmitted through a powerful computer that will be installed on top of the tidal test structure. The data will then be transmitted via Wifi and/or cellular service to the website for display (www.mreconewengland.org).
The data output is being hosted at a web site which was created by Bradshaw Lupton of piRshared, a Wareham system integrator and engineering genius. piRshared is supplying system design, integration, many small and big parts and a demonstration site located close to the canal.
A key element of the BTTS project is to inspire students of all stripes to get involved. To that end we have been reaching out to STEM organizations throughout the US and within MA and the region. “Thanks a key volunteer, Bradshaw Lupton of piRshared we were able to put the FSI ACM in the pool during the recent MATE ROV Competition at the Sandwich STEM Academy pool to show the students, teachers and parents how to capture, transmit and display real time water velocity data using off the shelf equipment and ingenuity. We continue to demonstrate the ins and outs of the data transmission system that when fully operational aboard the BTTS structure will enable students from around the world to access the data and make predictions of power output for their various engineering projects, said John Miller, Executive Director, MRECo.
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Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo) is a nonprofit corporation that educates and involves all stakeholders (Academic, industry, governmental/regulatory, and public interest groups) to promote the sustainable development of renewable energy in New England ocean waters. To do this, MRECo must establish. MRECo envisions a future where New England obtains a significant, amount of its power (5% or more) from reliable and predictable ocean based renewable energy technologies. To do so, MRECo supports the infrastructure for testing that allows the cost effective, rapid commercialization of new sustainable technologies being developed by the rich entrepreneurial environment of the region. www.mreconewengland.org
Seaport Economic Council is funding the development of the Bourne Tidal Test Site (BTTS) as part of Baker-Polito administration’s commitment to promote prosperity in seaport communities of all sizes as well as to cultivate job and economic growth in the maritime economic sector. The Seaport Economic Council, chaired by the Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth and administered by the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development with support from the Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, challenges the 78 coastal communities of Massachusetts to leverage their unique geographic advantages in order to grow jobs and the economy as well as prepare for the future as we confront the challenges posed by sea level rise and increasingly powerful coastal storms.
Falmouth Scientific Inc. (FSI) designs, manufactures and services sophisticated instruments and systems for ocean and fresh water environments. They offer standard and customized sensors and systems for current, wave and tide measurement, as well as sonar scanning systems and acoustic transducers. Customers and applications include offshore oil operations, research programs, marine transportation, environmental monitoring and more. Their 30 plus years in the industry and their close proximity to the Cape Cod Canal (Cataumet, MA) make them a perfect partner. www.falmouth.com
Impact LABS (New Bedford, MA) and its sponsors and partners, including Analog Devices, Dell, Intel, PTC and V5 Systems, share a mission to support businesses that are pursuing resilience: profitable, sustainable operations. This mission includes a particular focus on intersections between natural resource management and green infrastructure. Marine kinetic energy is a perfect market for us to support in this sense. We are thrilled to partner with MREC at the Bourne Tidal Test Site to help advance profitable, sustainable businesses in marine renewables.” — Chris Rezendes, Founder, Impact LABS. www.iotimpactlabs.com
piRshared Labs (Buzzards Bay, MA) is an integration, communications, software, hardware, mechanical engineering firm founded by three former roommates at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in 1968. Their work spans and connects all current platforms from the Internet of Things on esp8266, arduing, raspberry pi, android, IOS, through to IBM BlueMIX and Watson products. The Bourne Tidal Test Site demonstration project involves the firm’s marine sensor, mechanical engineering and communications experts in placing instrumentation in inland waterways and transmitting the data through the cloud via MQTT for STEM students and others to view. piRshared will offer iOT classes at Sandwich High School in September. Many thanks to contributors: Jeff Coleman, Scott Haigh, Raymond Coleman and Bradshaw Lupton.
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- November 21, 2017 – Bourne Tidal Test Site Installation Complete
- September, 28, 2017 – First Permanent Tidal Test Stand in the US Approved
- August 30, 2017 Call for Abstracts: 2018 AGU Ocean Sciences Meeting
- July 20, 2017 – MRECo Summer Update
- June 20, 2017 – MRECo Summer Update Bourne Tidal Test Site Structure Complete
- May 4, 2017 – Bourne Tidal Test Site Update and May 6 ROV Competition
- January 20, 2017 – New Ocean Energy Webinar Series Begins January 24
- December 17, 2016 – MRECo Holiday News and Greetings
- October 27, 2016 – Panelists Lead MTS TechSurge on Non-grid connected applications for ocean energy
- October 24, 2016 – Register today for Ocean Energy for non-Grid Connected Applications
- October 21, 2016 – Bourne Tidal Test Site Receives Preliminary Permit from FERC
- September 6, 2016
- July 8, 2016
- May 17, 2016
- March 14, 2016
- February 3, 2015
- December 11, 2014
- August 12 , 2014
- April 29, 2014
- March 10, 2014
- December 23, 2013
News of Interest
Sea Technology magazine – November 2017 Issue
First Tidal Test Site Approved For Cape Cod Canal
After several environmental studies and careful review by multiple agencies, the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo) has received final approval from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to install the Bourne Tidal Test Site within the Cape Cod Canal. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
Cape Cod Times – December 6, 2017
URI Engineers to Use New Canal Tidal Test Site
BUZZARDS BAY – The new tidal test site in the Cape Cod Canal will soon be in use.Engineers from the University of Rhode Island plan to use the new test turbine to gather data on changes in water velocity. URI wants to use an acoustic doppler to gather information to map water velocity variations during a number of tidal cycles.URI represents the first organization that will work at the facility, which was completed a just few weeks ago. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
Cape Cod Times – by Ethan Genter November 23, 2017
Cape Cod Canal turbine testing site complete
BUZZARDS BAY — The Bourne Tidal Test Site has been fully installed in the Cape Cod Canal near the railroad bridge.Workers from AGM Marine finished the work on the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative test site, which is the first of its kind in the U.S., on Tuesday, said Maggie Merrill, spokeswoman for the collaborative. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
Cape Cod Times – by Ethan Genter November 12, 2017
Cape Cod Canal turbine testing site taking shape
Work is now underway on the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative’s Bourne tidal test site, a facility that is the first of its kind in the country and would allow researchers and developers to try out their hydrokinetic turbines in the Cape Cod Canal.The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded MRECo the permit for the testing site next to the railroad bridge on the Buzzards Bay side of the canal in October. By Friday, workers from AGM Marine, a Mashpee-based company, had installed two pylons into the canal’s floor for the structure. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
The Bourne Enterprise – by Karen B. Hunter – November 9, 2017
Bourne Tidal Turbine Test Site Becomes A Reality
Work began this week on the mainland side of the Cape Cod Canal, right next to the abutment for the railroad bridge in Buzzards Bay, to build a testing structure for tidal turbines—turbines that generate energy by harnessing the power of tidal flow. Once built, it will be one of just two testing structures of its kind in the world—and the only one in the United States. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
Renewable Energy Magazine – by Dan McCue – Monday, 23 October 2017
Deepwater Wind Aims to Bring Economic Benefits to New Bedford
If approved by the MassachusettsDepartment of Public Utilities, Deepwater Wind will establish a construction and long-term operations hub in the City of New Bedford for its Revolution Wind project.The company signed a Letter of Intent with Massachusetts in September of 2016 to lease the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal as a staging and deployment location for the Revolution Wind and future wind projects.The company’s plans to use the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal and other facilities in the City are seen by some as a way to jumpstart the offshore wind industry in Massachusetts.Operated by MassCEC, the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal is a multi-purpose, 26-acre facility designed to support the construction, assembly and deployment of offshore wind projects, as well as handle bulk, break-bulk, container and large specialty marine cargo. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
Cape Cod Times – by Ethan Genter – October 4, 2107
Tidal turbine test site at Cape Cod Canal gets green light
BUZZARDS BAY — The Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative has received approval to install a first-of-its-kind tidal turbine test site on the Cape Cod Canal. “It really has potential to drive developers to the region,” said John Miller, the nonprofit’s executive director.The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded the collaborative a yearlong renewable license to run the test site near the railroad bridge, Miller said. The site will have a platform that can be raised and lowered from the canal, allowing hydrokinetic turbine developers to test out their equipment before going into full production. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
- Hydro International – October 4, 2017
First Permanent Tidal Power Test Site in the US Approved
After several environmental studies and careful review by multiple agencies, the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo)has received final approval from the US Army Corps of Engineers to install the Bourne Tidal Test Site within the Cape Cod Canal. The test stand will be installed in a sheltered spot where access is exclusively via the Army Corps of Engineers’ facility (where fishing from shore is not permitted) and where it is far out of the navigational channel. [ Read the complete story. >>> ]
- BBC News – September 25, 2017
£4.5m boost for Anglesey tidal energy development
The Welsh Government has announced £4.5m in funding for marine and tidal energy development in north Wales. [ Read the story. >>> ]
New Ocean Energy Webinar Series
Held January 24, 2017
The ocean is a vast and almost entirely un-tapped source of energy, and has the potential to be a leading
alternative source of clean, renewable power.
[More information. >>>]
- CapeCod.com – August 4, 2017
Canal Water Turbine Testing Facility Waiting for Final Approval
BOURNE –Plans for the construction and installation of a water turbine test facility in the Cape Cod Canal are on hold as it awaits final approval from the Army Corps of Engineers.The turbine-testing facility would be installed under the railroad bridge by the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo).The New England non-profit organization is working to advance ocean renewable energy projects. [ Read the story. >>> ]
- Tidal Energy Today – October 28, 2016
Bourne tidal site to feed data to NERACOOS
John Miller, MRECo Director, said, “This is the first and very important step to gaining all the regulatory permits required for the test site, which will be the first in the United States. MRECo was given preliminary permission to work in an area that covers more than just the spot where the actual structure will be. This was done to allow studies of adjacent areas that might be impacted.” [ Read the story. >>> ]
By Michael Harris, Associate Editor
MRECo receives FERC permit for tidal energy test site
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has approved a preliminary permit submitted by the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative, helping clear the way for the development of the Bourne Tidal Test Site in Massachusetts’ Cape Cod Canal.As planned, the Bourne complex will include a structure onto which turbines up to 100 kW in capacity and three meters in diameter can be tested. The Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo) said energy generated at the site would be stored locally, thus qualifying the proposal for FERC’s “Verdant Rule” due to it not being connected to the grid. [ Read the story. >>> ]
- Tidal Energy Today – September 19, 2016
Bourne tidal site to feed data to NERACOOS
The Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observation Systems (NERACOOS) will host and post the data that will be generated from the Bourne Tidal Test Site in Cape Cod Canal, Massachusetts. The data will be available to professionals, students, and the public on the NERACOOS web site that already hosts data coming from many sources in New England waters, the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo) informed. [ Read the story. >>> ]
- The Bourne Enterprise – Calvin M. Cutler, June 30, 2016
Canal Waters Surveyed For Turbine Testing
Standing on the mainland side of the Cape Cod Canal, in a spot tucked underneath the railroad bridge, Teledyne Marine Group applications engineer Jeffrey Den Herder held a large remote control . [ Read the story. >>> ]
- Vineyard Gazette – Alex Elvin, June 29, 2016
Tidal Energy Project Gains Fresh Momentum
Plans to develop a permanent tidal energy test site in the Cape Cod Canal may bode well for a long-stalled effort to bring tidal energy to Muskeget Channel off Chappaquiddick. [ Read the story. >>>]
- The Boston Globe – Steve Maas, April 8, 2016
The Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative will soon install the nation’s first permanent facility to evaluate submerged turbines that generate electricity from tidalpower.http://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2016/04/07/tidalpower/RJTFbOkT2240YOD0OsdPCP/story.html?s_campaign=8315
- ECO, Environment Coastal & Offshore magazine included a story about the test site in their April 2016 edition, page 62. https://www.ecomagazine.com/search?searchphrase=all&searchword=MRECo%20Funded
- Minesto and partners receive financing for marine power R&D
Vastra Frolunda, Sweden – 12/07/2015 [ Read the story. >>> ]
- Edgartown Explores Tides As Potential Future Renewable Energy Source
-by The Cape and Islands NPR stations, WCAI 90.1, WNAN 91.1,b WZAI 94.3
December 8, 2014 [ Read the story. >>> ]
More MRECo News
Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative (MRECo)- to Manage Tidal Testing at Turners Falls, MA (Marion, MA)
Tuesday, February 3, 2015 [ Read the full release. (pdf)>>> ]
Baker-Polito Administration Announces $6.6 Million in Seaport Economic Council Grants to Coastal Communities and Economic Development Initiatives
Friday, November 20, 2015
Grants will support economic development initiatives and infrastructure improvementsBuzzards Bay – Today the Baker-Polito Administration’s Seaport Economic Council announced awards to Chatham, Gosnold, Marshfield, New Bedford, Quincy, Salem, Saugus, Salisbury, Winthrop, and the Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative. [ Read the full release. (pdf)>>> ]