Ocean wave testing under way off Oregon coast - KPTV - FOX 12

Ocean wave testing under way off Oregon coast

Posted: Updated: Sep 7, 2012 09:56 AM
NEWPORT, OR (KPTV) -

One of the first devices to test ocean waves is in the water off the Oregon coast.

The Ocean Sentinel is a $1.5 million device developed by the Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center at Oregon State University.

It could be used as a commercial power generator.

Academic researchers are testing its energy output at a new site near Newport to determine whether wave energy is a good source of sustainable energy.

"They have a sense of what they might do, but until they get out there and you see how much energy they produce for a given wave climate, see how they are reliable, see how they sustain an Oregon winter, you're not going to be able to deploy these commercially until they get through those development phases," said Belinda Batten, the director of the Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center.

Researchers eventually want to have a wave energy device tested offshore while hooked up to a power grid on shore.

Four Oregon communities are in the running for that setup, including Warrenton, Newport, Reedsport and Coos Bay.

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