The Hawai‘i Wave Energy Test Site (WETS), the United States’ first grid-connected test site of this kind, will be completed by the US Navy in mid-2015. The Hawai‘i Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) is providing key research support to this national effort in the form of environmental monitoring, independent wave energy conversion (WEC) device power performance and durability analysis, and critical marine logistical support.

Through a cooperative effort between the Navy and the US Department of Energy (DOE), WETS will host companies seeking to test their pre-commercial WEC devices in an operational setting, enabling them to advance their device transition readiness level. Initial funding opportunities by Navy and DOE have resulted in a set of five devices to be tested through mid-2018. Important additional research support to the project comes from the Office of Naval Research and the State of Hawai‘i.

HNEI will work with the Navy and DOE to directly support WEC testing at WETS in three key areas:

  • Environmental impact monitoring (acoustic and EMF signatures, sediment transport and ecological surveys;
  • Independent WEC device performance analysis (power performance and device durability);
  • Logistics support through a site-dedicated at-sea support platform.


Point Person: Patrick Cross