Hawaii calls for OTEC power purchase proposals

Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority (NELHA) has launched a request for proposals for purchase of power produced by ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) plant system.

The request for proposals covers the design, construction, implementation, operation and maintenance of an OTEC system at the NELHA research campus.

The contractor is expected to construct and operate a 100 – 300kW OTEC plant, while NELHA will enter into power purchase agreement (PPA) for a minimum of 10 years.

The OTEC system is intended to provide energy to assist in the current and future energy demands of NELHA, according to the request for proposals.

Plant(s) would be land based but must emulate a marine site to the maximum extent possible to represent a quantum leap forward in the commercialization of OTEC, NELHA noted.

The due date for proposals has been set for February 15, 2018.

NELHA is a state-owned agency developed for the main purpose of research and development of OTEC to assist in the commercialization of this technology.

The agency administers the 870-acre demonstration site for emerging renewable and ocean based technologies called the Hawaii Ocean Science and Technology Park (HOST Park) in Kailua-Kona.

The HOST Park has the largest deep and surface seawater distribution system in the world, according to NELHA.

NELHA is proposing a strategy to advance OTEC using the existing infrastructure in conjunction with a power purchase agreement and a Use and Occupancy agreement for a OTEC system under which it would provide the land and access to warm and cold seawater.

An OTEC system is a power plant which generates electrical power from the temperature differential in deep and surface seawater.