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Title: Environmental impacts of ocean thermal energy conversion

Abstract

Ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) is a promising technology for production of energy and usable by-products from solar-generated temperature gradients in the world's oceans. Although considered benign compared to alternative forms of energy generation, deployment of OTEC plants will result in interactions with marine, terrestrial, and atmospheric environments and in socioeconomic interactions with surrounding areas. The Ocean Energy Technology Program of the Department of Energy has funded research to improve the understanding of these interactions. No insurmountable environmental obstacle to OTEC deployment has been uncovered. This document contains a summary of that research for entrepreneurs, utility engineers, and others interested in pursuing OTEC's potential. In addition, it provides a guide to permits, regulations, and licenses applicable to construction of an OTEC plant.

Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Solar Energy Research Inst., Golden, CO (USA)
OSTI Identifier:
5863086
Report Number(s):
SERI/SP-271-2796
ON: DE85012168
DOE Contract Number:
AC02-83CH10093
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Other Information: Portions of this document are illegible in microfiche products. Original copy available until stock is exhausted
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; OCEAN THERMAL POWER PLANTS; ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS; RESEARCH PROGRAMS; OCEAN THERMAL ENERGY CONVERSION; CONVERSION; ENERGY CONVERSION; POWER PLANTS; SOLAR ENERGY CONVERSION; SOLAR POWER PLANTS; THERMAL POWER PLANTS; 140800* - Solar Energy- Ocean Energy Systems

Citation Formats

Not Available. Environmental impacts of ocean thermal energy conversion. United States: N. p., 1986. Web.
Not Available. Environmental impacts of ocean thermal energy conversion. United States.
Not Available. 1986. "Environmental impacts of ocean thermal energy conversion". United States. doi:.
@article{osti_5863086,
title = {Environmental impacts of ocean thermal energy conversion},
author = {Not Available},
abstractNote = {Ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) is a promising technology for production of energy and usable by-products from solar-generated temperature gradients in the world's oceans. Although considered benign compared to alternative forms of energy generation, deployment of OTEC plants will result in interactions with marine, terrestrial, and atmospheric environments and in socioeconomic interactions with surrounding areas. The Ocean Energy Technology Program of the Department of Energy has funded research to improve the understanding of these interactions. No insurmountable environmental obstacle to OTEC deployment has been uncovered. This document contains a summary of that research for entrepreneurs, utility engineers, and others interested in pursuing OTEC's potential. In addition, it provides a guide to permits, regulations, and licenses applicable to construction of an OTEC plant.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 1986,
month = 4
}

Technical Report:
Other availability
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  • This analysis identifies the economic impacts associated with OTEC development and quantifies them at the national, regional, and industry levels. It focuses on the effects on the United States' economy of the domestic development and utilization of twenty-five and fifty 400 MWe OTEC power plants by the year 2000. The methodology employed was characteristic of economic impact analysis. After conducting a literature review, a likely future OTEC scenario was developed on the basis of technological, siting, and materials requirements parameters. These parameters were used to identify the industries affected by OTEC development; an economic profile was constructed for each ofmore » these industries. These profiles established an industrial baseline from which the direct, indirect, and induced economic impacts of OTEC implementation could be estimated. Each stage of this analysis is summarized; and the economic impacts are addressed. The methodology employed in estimating the impacts is described.« less
  • Construction and operation of an Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) facility will affect marine, terrestrial, and atmospheric environments. The nature and degree of OTEC environmental impacts have been subjects of numerous studies and reports. The proposed 40-MWe OTEC plant at Kahe Point, Oahu, Hawaii has been the focus of much of the work. The first section provides a summary of pertinent design features of the proposed plant, including standard operating parameters. Next, salient elements of the biological oceanography in the region of the proposed development are summarized. The following sections discuss expected impacts of construction and operation of the plant,more » and finally, significant aspects of modeling studies conducted in support of the Kahe OTEC plant development are presented.« less
  • Econoimc profiles of the industries most affected by the construction, deployment, and operation of Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) powerplants are presented. Six industries which will contribute materials and/or components to the construction of OTEC plants have been identified and are profiled here. These industries are: steel industry, concrete industry, titanium metal industry, fabricated structural metals industry, fiber glass-reinforced plastics industry, and electrical transmission cable industry. The economic profiles for these industries detail the industry's history, its financial and economic characteristics, its technological and production traits, resource constraints that might impede its operation, and its relation to OTEC. Some ofmore » the historical data collected and described in the profile include output, value of shipments, number of firms, prices, employment, imports and exports, and supply-demand forecasts. For most of the profiled industries, data from 1958 through 1980 were examined. In addition, profiles are included on the sectors of the economy which will actualy construct, deploy, and supply the OTEC platforms.« less
  • This report concentrates on thermal profile envelopes and thermal cross-sections in regions that have been indicated by previous work to be among the most promising sites for Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) plants. The three U.S.-controlled regions that show promise as sites for prototype OTEC installations are the Gulf Stream, Hawaiian Islands, and Puerto Rico. The environmental considerations of these sites are ocean temperature differences, current structure, and storm damage potential.
  • The report documents the data reduction and analysis or interpretation of representative records and an accompanying report documents the assessment of computer models developed to analyze the structural response of cold water pipes (CWPs). The principal aim of the data interpretation phase of the study was to determine the causal relationship between the environment and the barge/CWP response and to provide the information required to assess the CWP computer models.