Future
Development Aspects

 Ocean
Energy is the world’s most prominent outstanding wellspring of undiscovered
renewable power source, holding noteworthy potential in decarbonizing future
power supplies. Currently, more than 10MW of ocean-going devices are introduced
inside European waters – a substantial lift from 2009’s 3.5MW of ocean energy
produced. 1

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In another recent report on Blue Growth by The
Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE), ocean energy
employment in Europe alone was estimated to increase from 1,000 in 2010 to a
potential 20,000 by 2035. 1

OTEC
Power Plant energy estimation in GW in Europe

In recent years, large European engineering companies and
utilities have ramped up their investments into the ocean energy sector,
triggering steady progress. Meanwhile, countries including the USA, Japan,
China and Korea have also rapidly begun increasing their investments in
pre-commercial energy ocean device testing. A 2011 report from the
International Energy Agency, ‘Ocean Energy Systems: International Vision
Report’ estimated that given the right market conditions, the
development of 748 GW’s of ocean energy by 2050, could generate
160,000 direct jobs by 2030 and save up to 5.2 billion tons of CO2
by 2050. 1

 

The size of the prize for commercializing
ocean energy is huge. In Europe alone, the ocean energy industry plans to
deploy 100GW of production capacity by 2050, meeting 10% of electricity demand
which is enough to meet the daily electricity needs of 76 million households. 2          

Today, European organizations are the
perspicuous worldwide pioneers in ocean energy, representing 66% of tidal
energy patents and 44% of wave energy patents. Most ventures created outside
Europe, in Canada and South-East Asia, utilize European innovation. 2

This puts EU companies in prime position
to capture a global market estimated to be worth 53€bn annually in 2050. 2

Five countries making the most of their
marine power potential:

 

Ø
Australia

Australia has 34,218 kilometers (21,262 miles) of coastline and
is an area identified with some of the world’s best marine power potential
across its southern coastline.

The
total wave energy crossing the 25 meter profundity isobath between Gerald ton
and the southern tip of Tasmania may be more than 1300 TWh/year, evaluated in
over five times the total power necessities for Australia. It additionally need
a large number of rivers and creeks that can be used to harness
hydroelectricity power. 3

Currently
hydroelectricity accounts for 6.5-7% of Australian electricity generation. 3

Ø 
North America 

Hydro
power in North America already provides nearly seven percent of the nation’s
electricity, and it holds tremendous potential for expansion. 3

A
report by the US Department of Energy revealed that wave and other water power
resources across the US could potentially provide 15% of the nation’s
electricity by 2030, with areas such as Hawaii being identified as having
enough energy to generate more than 80 terawatt hours of electricity a year if
developed to their maximum potential. Alaska was also identified as having a
high potential for wave energy developments, along with some areas of the East
Coast, which have strong tides that could be tapped into to produce energy. 3

One project
currently being laid out is the Roosevelt Island Tidal Energy project, where 30
turbines are being installed along the strait that connects the Long Island
Sound with the Atlantic Ocean in the New York Harbor. The turbines are scheduled
to be fully installed and will use the flow of the river and tides to generate
1,050 kilowatts of electricity – enough to power 9,500 New York homes. 3

Ø South
Korea

Pike
Research, which provides rigorous examinations of emerging clean-tech markets,
estimates South Korea will be one of the top countries producing tidal stream
energy in the world. 3

This
is likely due to its west and southern coasts being known for high tides and
strong tidal currents. 3

Hydro
power has already taken off in South Korea considerably, with 40% of the
country’s energy being generated by it. Since 2001, several large hydro and
nuclear plants in South Korea have been run by Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power
(KHNP), which is a subsidy of the Korea Electric Power Corporation. The country
is also taking its expertise in the field abroad, with South Korean companies said
to be in the running for two major hydroelectric construction contracts in
Georgia, the Korea Herald Newspaper reported. 3

The UK – taking small
but important steps

Along
with South Korea, the UK is being heralded as one of the leaders in wave and
tidal power technology, with some of the best and unique  testing facilities in the world.

But
despite this there has been added pressure on the government to invest more
into the industry so it becomes a front runner and doesn’t lag behind.
Currently the UK industry is taking small but extremely significant steps
towards harnessing wave and tidal power, thanks to developments such as the
Searaser – a cost effective underwater pump which creates power from the swells
and tides of the ocean – and it currently possesses seven out of the eight
large-scale prototypes deployed anywhere in the world. 3

According
to the Department for Energy and Climate Change, the UK currently generates
about 1.3% of its electricity from hydro power. Most of this is generated from
large scale schemes in the Scottish Highlands. Recent studies estimate there is
a remaining viable hydro potential of 850-1,550MW in the UK. This represents
approximately 1-2 percent of current UK generating capacity.

China – the Asian giant
goes full steam ahead

With
one of largest populations in the world China needs a lot of energy. While most
of its energy comes from non-renewable sources, the country is aiming to have
20% of its energy come from renewable sources by 2020. 3

With
18,000km of coastline and 6,500 islands, China has great tidal and wave power
potential. One project it is working on is Blue Energy, a 120km tidal energy
generating bridge across the Bohai Strait which is estimated to be able to
generate more than 70,000MW of power a year. Also in the Zhejiang area, in
Taizhou City, there are an estimated thousand megawatts of energy up for grabs,
along the 630 kilometres of coastline. 3

Site Selection Criteria for OTEC Plant in Bangladesh

The most important
physical criterion for OTEC site selection is the accessibility of deep cold
seawater. For an OTEC plant to generate a significant amount of power, the
temperature difference between the surface and deep ocean water must be at
least 20°C. 4

The site of Bangladesh is naturally gifted area to
establish Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) as Bangladesh lies just
beneath the tropic of cancer and on the shore of the Bay of Bengal. Temperature
difference between the ocean surface and the water at a depth of 1000 meter
varies from less than 18 degrees Celsius to more than 24 degrees Celsius. OTEC
can be sited in principle almost anywhere in the tropical ocean-generally
between Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn. 5

 

It can be seen that for Bay of Bengal the temperature
difference between surface and sub-surface (1000m) sea water ranges from 20 degrees
Celsius to 22 degrees Celsius. So, OTEC technology is expected to be feasible
in the Bay of Bengal which helps to generate electricity. Here
we mainly focus on Cox’s Bazaar where OTEC plant can be constructed. The annual
average temperature in Cox’s Bazaar remains at about a maximum of 34.8 °C and a
minimum of 16.1 °C. The political climate supportive of large infrastructural
development in Cox’s Bazaar is suitable enough which can be considered the
major prerequisite for constructing OTEC plants. Moreover, support of foreign
investment from the standpoints of taxation, permitting, and emigration (or
working visas) for foreigners in Bangladesh is quite satisfactory and it can be
improved if proper government arrangements are made. 5

 

Potential
for OTEC Energy

There are 38 main lands
and islands within 200 nautical miles from coast of the Americas, 23 within
Africa and 38 within the Indian/Pacific Ocean which have OTEC potential. 4

Multi-Industrial
application of DSW

Aside from supplying
electricity, OTEC is also capable of extracting very large volumes of DSW for
its operation. DSW is referred to ocean water from a depth of 200 meters or
below sea level and accounts for 95% of all seawater. It has cold temperature,
is abundant in minerals and is pathogen free and stable. Below are some
applications of DSW: 4

1) Air conditioning

After the utilization of
DSW in the OTEC plant, the temperature of the water is still low and cold. Therefore,
it can be used as chilling source for air conditioning or in nearby
greenhouses. Such air conditioning system provides a better energy saver
properties compared to the ordinary electrical refrigeration methods. 4

2) Mineral Water
Production

The mineral concentration
in DSW is high and is known to possess many medicinal properties. Recent
research has also shown anti-obesity and anti-diabetic effects of DSW in mice. Therefore
it is possible to produce high quality mineral water as a by-product of the
OTEC plant 4.

3) Aquaculture

Due to its nutritional
value, DSW can be used effectively for aquaculture to increase the growth rate
of the culture and decrease the disease outbreak. 4

4) Lithium
Extraction

One very common method of
industrial lithium production is the extraction of lithium-chloride from
seawater. Since DSW is much purer and cleaner than surface seawater, it can be
economically more suitable for lithium extraction by reducing cleaning
intervals. 4

5) Food,
Cosmetics and Pharmaceuticals

The nutritional properties
of DSW also make it a valuable source for the food, cosmetics and
pharmaceutical industries. In Japan, DSW is used in the production of
‘Sake’, ‘Tofu’, etc. Some cosmetic products based on DSW has also reached the
Japanese market and gained tremendous public favor. 4

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