This blog is a website to provide ongoing support to all teachers in their implementation of the Island Energy Inquiry Curriculum shared in teacher workshops throughout Hawai'i.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Energy from the ocean

Here's the pilot plant for Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion being developed by Makai Ocean Engineering.  We toured the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority right near Kona airport on the Big Island of Hawaii.  Amazing technologies to take advantage of Kona's deep, cold, clean water. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion

This poster was sent to us by Makai Ocean Engineering, a Hawaii-based firm that is developing Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion for our state.  The company is located on Oahu, but this pilot plant is on the Big Island, at NELHA (Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority). 

OTEC uses the energy difference of cold, deep ocean water and warmer surface water to drive an ammonia cycle, spinning a turbine to produce electricity.  The ammonia is in a closed-loop system, so OTEC is extremely clean, with no need for fresh water and no competition for space or resources.

You can learn more about OTEC at Makai's website,

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Wind Turbine Size on Maui

We visited Maui's Kaheawa wind farm with First Wind's Kekoa Kaluhiwa and Jennifer Endo on October 17.  As we passed one of the turbines, we noticed a worker cleaning one of the fan blades.  Can you spot him?  There were actually two workers on the same blade.  Exciting view!