OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
Ocean Sentinel being towed under Yaquina Bay Bridge at sunset header image

Dan Hellin, NNMREC’s Environmental Compliance Manager, captured this tranquil moment on day two of recovery operations on October 5, 2013. Read more...

Welcome to the Northwest National
Marine Renewable
Energy Center!

Welcome to the web site for the Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center (NNMREC). NNMREC is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy to facilitate the development of marine renewable energy technologies -- primarily wave and tidal -- via research, education, and outreach. Established in 2008, NNMREC is a partnership between Oregon State University (OSU) and the University of Washington (UW). In 2011 NNMREC’s research agenda expanded to include offshore wind energy technology as well.

NNMREC faculty and students investigate technical, environmental, and social dimensions of these ocean energy technologies, and perform research that fills knowledge gaps. Through this research, students are becoming industry pioneers, educating themselves in these promising new energy fields. NNMREC itself serves as a neutral voice of science and engineering to inform the public and decision-makers about the effects and capabilities of wave, tidal, and offshore wind energy technologies.

NNMREC Brands Marine Energy Converter Testing Facilities

The Pacific Marine Energy Center (PMEC) is the name of NNMREC’s marine energy converter testing facilities located around the Pacific Northwest region. Much of PMEC is still in the early planning stages. Ultimately PMEC will facilitate testing of a broad range of technologies being produced by the marine energy industry. On the OSU campus, PMEC includes scaled laboratory testing at the Wallace Energy Systems and Renewables Facility and the wave tanks at the O.H. Hinsdale test facility. On the UW campus, testing is supported at the Harris Hydraulics Laboratory’s current flume and small-scale wave flume.

pmec facilities

For intermediate scale wave energy devices, UW supports open water testing in Puget Sound and in Lake Washington. For a full scale wave energy resource, the North Energy Test Site (NETS) can accommodate devices up to 100kW connected to the Ocean Sentinel, and larger devices if no grid emulation or connection is required.  The grid-connected site currently under development (initially referred to as "PMEC") will be referred to as the South Energy Test Site (SETS). SETS will serve as the utility-scale wave energy test facility for the US, and is expected to be available for device testing in 2016. Over time, our vision is to add other wave and current test facilities to the PMEC portfolio to create a global hub for marine renewable energy development.