Technology Advancement

The fundamental technology development of Verdant Power’s Free Flow System has focused on concurrent advancements in the following four areas around and bearing on the company’s projects and work in partnership with government, NGO, and other research partners:

  • Technology Advancement

  • Manufacturing and Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) Reduction

  • Environmental Compatibility

  • Regulatory Acceptance

Key milestones achieved during this technology development period are as follows:

  • Advancing the Free Flow System through five generations of RD&D, taking the technology to the current 5th generation commercial class

  • Undertaking first-of-a-kind regulatory and environmental compatibility efforts, achieving acceptability of the Free Flow System design in marine environments and resulting in the first commercial license for tidal power in the United States

  • Progression of manufacturing and supply chain efforts focused on logical reductions in product costs and accordingly in LCOE

Generation 5 Free Flow System
Development of the 5th Generation (Gen5) Free Flow System is advancing based on prior generation operations. The Gen5 system represents a commercially economical design for reliability, resilience, and environmental compatibility.  The design cycle has focused on minimizing maintenance requirements by maximizing service intervals and achieving economic volume manufacturing and assembly.

Advancement of Gen5 Turbine Rotor Blades

Verdant Power completed a project supported by the US DOE to design and test the larger, higher-power Gen5 composite turbine rotor.  In addition to the DOE, the effort was conducted in partnership with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories,  and the University of Minnesota's St. Anthony Falls Laboratory and used evolving turbine modeling techniques along with computational fluid dynamics and finite element analysis to design, assess, and optimize the new rotor.  The composite blades were also designed for cost-effective volume production. 

The effort culminated in the successful full-scale (5m diameter) in-water dynamometry and loads testing of the full Gen5 turbine rotor assembly at Verdant Power's RITE Project site.  This updated rotor design is planned for use on Gen5 turbines to be installed at the RITE Project and future commercial installations, including at larger scales.

TriFrame Advancement and IO&M Cost Reductions

Key to the commercialization of a marine energy technology is to make significant reductions to the costs of system installation, operations & maintenance (IO&M). Towards this end, Verdant Power is in the midst of a three-phase project with support from the US Department of Energy (DOE) that will conduct an integrated design process to develop, operate, and execute a cost-effective maintenance cycle at full-scale in open water, on a TriFrame™ equipped with three Gen5 turbines at the RITE Project site.  Installation of the Gen5 system on the TriFrame™ mount is planned for Spring 2020.

Rendering of TriFrame™ Planned for Installation at RITE (2020)

 
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Key design enhancements to the Gen5 turbine include the following:

  • Composite (fiber-reinforced plastic) blades

  • Ductile iron hub casting

  • Casting for pylon/nacelle connection

  • Integrated gearbox unit incorporating shaft housing/bearings/seals

  • Redundant dynamic (shaft) and static sealing to retain lubricant and exclude seawater

  • Novel long service life main shaft seal arrangement

  • Failsafe brake

  • Non-toxic fouling-release coating system

  • Improved commercial quality control and assurance manufacturing process

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EMEC to Assess Free Flow System Performance

The European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) will provide an independent performance assessment of Verdant Power’s 5th Generation (Gen5) Free Flow System to be deployed at the RITE Project in 2020.  By independently measuring the system's performance, EMEC will add credibility to operational results and set a new standard for tidal energy technology developers to meet globally.  More >

Verdant Power Secures $6 Million Funding for Final System Demonstration at RITE Project

Verdant Power has received $6 million in funding for the next phase of its program to advance the development of the Company’s tidal power system and TriFrame mount at its RITE Project in New York City's East River.  The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) has approved $3M in co-funding support for the third phase of Verdant Power’s project that will qualify its tidal power system through to final test, demonstration and commercialization.  More >

Verdant Power Co-Founder Appointed to US Department of Commerce's Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee

Trey Taylor, Verdant Power Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer, has been appointed by US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross to serve a fifth consecutive term on the Department’s Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee (REEEAC).  The REEEAC is composed of senior private sector representatives that provide advice to the Secretary of Commerce on the development and administration of programs and policies to expand the export competitiveness of US renewable energy and energy efficiency products and services.  More >

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