Saturday, February 25, 2006

OTEC

Back when i was studying Mechanical Engineering in college, one of the cool projects I did was on Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion, or OTEC. It's the concept of taking the temperature gradients at different levels of depth in the ocean to create energy (a power cycle). We used the island of Moorea near Tahiti as a study, and designed an OTEC system that would basically power the whole island. It was an interesting project partly because my partners dad actually lived on the island, and gave us some good data (we were this |   | close to actually going there, damn). In the end though, the size of the system ended up being very huge and cost prohibitive. But this was 11 years ago, and things I'm sure things have changed, like more efficient materials and costs, but I'm too busy studying code now. BTW, I did a another cool diagram in Gliffy showing OTEC (click to get full image):

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