Visit to Saga University’s Institute of Ocean Energy  佐賀大学海洋エネルギー研究センター(IOES)訪問

IMG_2997OTEC Okinawa is the culmination of years of hard work and study in Japan. Though OTEC is not a new idea, as the only fully operational OTEC facility it is the leader in this new wave to harness power from the world’s oceans. Yet it is a Project That IS only Possible Due to the Continued work at Saga University’s Institute of Ocean Energy .

The Institute is housed at a satellite location along Imari bay in Saga Prefecture. In January, we visited IOES to learn more about the design and advisory arm of this project, and about OTEC development in general.



IMG_2951The Institute of Ocean Energy is a large complex hosting a variety of labs and projects. Many of the projects revolve around OTEC as the lead researchers work to increase the efficiency in every aspect of the OTEC system. To this end, the facility has a 30kw OTEC system in place. Of course, since the facility doesn’t have ready access to deep sea water the sea water used for experiments must be controlled externally. This allows researchers to test various equipment in a controlled environment before being placed out in the field.

IMG_2927IOES and Professor Ikegami in particular have focused on increasing the efficiency and reliability of heat exchangers in OTEC systems, testing various offerings from numerous companies. Now working closely with Xenesys Inc, they have put working designs into practice at OTEC Okinawa. Heat Exchangers can account for 1/4 the cost of a OTEC facility so finding the most efficient design is critical to the entire OTEC project. Many countries continue to develop heat exchange technology including projects taking place with our friends at NELHA.

IMG_2964In addition to the OTEC laboratory, IEOS contains several other ocean energy laboratories including the production of exciting new wave power technology that has been tested on small scales and is being scaled up to full size.

IOES also includes a Lithium Extraction Lab, Heat Exchanger Lab, Layered Ocean Flow Lab, Lecture Halls, and other research areas. If you’re interested in learning more about OTEC or clean energy research, it is definitely worth the visit.

About Visiting IOES

IMG_2986IOES Accepts Visitors from two o’clock to 4:00 on Wednesday and Thursday excepting National Holidays. To make an appointment email IOES .








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