Lockheed Martin plans 10MW ocean-based power plant

Lockheed Martin is working with Reignwood Group to develop an Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) pilot power plant off the coast of southern China.

The 10MW offshore plant, to be designed by Lockheed Martin, will be the largest OTEC plant developed to date, supplying 100% of the power needed for a green resort to be built by Reignwood. "The benefits to generating power with OTEC are immense, and Lockheed Martin has been leading the way in advancing this technology for decades," said Dan Heller, vice president of new ventures for Lockheed Martin. "Constructing a sea-based, multi-megawatt pilot OTEC power plant for Reignwood Group is the final step in making it an economic option to meet growing needs for clean, reliable energy." OTEC takes the natural temperature difference found in the ocean in tropical regions and uses it to create power. Unlike other renewable energy technologies, the power is base load, meaning it can be produced consistently 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The energy can also be used for the cultivation of other crucial resources such as clean drinking water and hydrogen for applications such as electric vehicles. Once the proposed plant is developed and operational, the two companies plan to use the knowledge gained to improve the design of additional commercial-scale plants, to be built over the next 10 years. According to Lockheed Martin, each 100MW OTEC facility could produce the same amount of energy in a year as 1.3 million barrels of oil, decrease carbon emissions by half a million tons and providing a domestic energy source that is sustainable, reliable and secure.