On September 9, 2010, the Department of Energy (“DOE”) announced more than $37 million in funding to 27 projects that will help develop marine and hydrokinetic (“MHK”) technologies.  This is the largest grant ever given to MHK technologies which generate power from the ocean, rivers, and streams.

The projects that received grants range from concept studies to actual prototype testing of new generation.  The two largest grants awarded were for $10 million, and they are both for large tidal power projects.  One $10 million grant was awarded to Ocean Renewable Power Company in Portland, Maine.  That project will build and operate grid-connected cross-flow turbine tidal energy technology on the ocean floor in Cobscook Bay.  Once completed, the project will be able to generate commercial energy from moderate to high velocity tidal waves in water up 150 feet deep.

The second $10 million grant was awarded to Public Utility District No.1 of Snohomish County, located in Everett, Washington.  This project will implement two grid-connected tidal turbines in the Puget Sound that will generate 1 MW of energy during peak tidal flows.  The turbines were manufactured by OpenHydro Group Ltd., and the project is expected to gather technical and cost-performance data.

A complete list of the projects that received grants is available here.