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Energy from Oceans: Anchoring of Energy Storage System

Nearly 50% of the U.S. population lives within 50 miles of the coast. Therefore, commercial harvesting of renewable power from ocean currents represents an attractive option as the U.S works to reduce emissions from fossil fuels. The North Carolina shoreline is close to the Gulf Stream, from which energy could be recovered. However, technologies are needed to temporarily store energy recovered from ocean currents and to anchor devices to the ocean floor. A multidisciplinary team led by Dr. Mo Gabrwith investigators Drs. Shamim Rahman and Joe DeCarolis from CCEE, Drs. Paul Ro and Andre Mazzoleni from Mechanical Engineering, and Drs. Iqbal Husain and Emmanuel Agamloh from Electrical Engineering, are analyzing and developing an energy storage system and potential anchoring mechanisms for offshore power generation devices. Graduate students Jinfu Xiao, Zahra Aghazadeh,Binghui Li and Priscilla Osei (MCE, 2013) worked on the project. Issues investigated include the storage of offshore compressed air that is subsequently used for energy generation, development of mooring approaches for energy converters, and innovative foundation systems. This project is in collaboration with Dr. Billy Edge, the director of the Ocean Energy Program at the UNC Coastal Studies Institute.