Catch the Wind: 2023 Collegiate Wind Competition Phase Two Teams Announced 🌬️

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Wind Energy Technologies Office


Feb. 13, 2023

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In This Issue

Continue to follow the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO) for the latest news, events, and updates.

Icon of a wind turbine and a group of people.

Did You Know?

College students can build real-world wind energy skills and industry connections by participating in DOE's Collegiate Wind Competition.

Check out our website to learn how WETO supports the development of a diverse, qualified wind energy workforce.

Research & Development Feature

Reducing Cybersecurity Threats to the Nation’s Wind Fleet

Several wind turbines located on a hilly, grassy terrain on an overcast day.

As wind energy becomes a larger part of the country’s renewable energy infrastructure, keeping wind power plants—and individual wind turbines—secure, safe, and reliable grows in importance. Although cybersecurity measures are incorporated into wind turbine designs, malicious threats remain possible and are always evolving, with potential consequences ranging from reduced energy generation to communications breakdowns between wind turbines and operators—or even the complete loss of a wind turbine’s ability to function. 

Discover how WETO is proactively working with multiple national laboratories to ensure that cybersecurity remains an essential component of wind energy.


DOE Announces Collegiate Wind Competition Phase 2 Teams

Two students adjust a model wind turbine.

Congratulations to the 13 teams selected to participate in Phase 2 of DOE's 2023 Collegiate Wind Competition! Among these 13 selected schools are three Hispanic-serving institutions, three Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-serving institutions, and one community college. 

Since 2014, DOE has held the Collegiate Wind Competition to provide college students an opportunity to build the skills and connections that will help them find jobs in the wind and renewable energy industries. Managed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory on behalf of WETO, the competition helps college students prepare for jobs in these industries through real-world wind energy technology, project development, and outreach experience.

DOE Seeks Information on University-Based Offshore Wind Centers and Co-Location of Aquaculture with Ocean Renewable Energy

DOE’s WETO and Water Power Technologies Office are requesting information on university-based offshore wind energy centers and the co-location of aquaculture and ocean renewable energy. Feedback is requested in the following areas:

  • Effective strategies for catalyzing sustainable university-based Centers of Excellence dedicated to solving challenges associated with offshore energy workforce development and the academia-to-offshore wind energy industry pipeline
  • Research needs associated with co-location of aquaculture and offshore wind energy
  • Research needs associated with co-development of aquaculture and marine energy technologies.

Responses to this RFI must be submitted electronically to no later than 5:00 p.m. ET on March 15th, 2023. For more information, read the full RFI.

Technical Assistance Is Available to Improve Interconnection Processes

The Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange—a program led by DOE’s WETO and Solar Energy Technologies Office and funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that focuses on inspiring new interconnection ideas and capabilities for wind energy, solar energy, and energy storage—is offering technical assistance for stakeholders to improve interconnection practices and processes for electricity distribution systems and the transmission system. This technical assistance must be specific to the interconnection of wind, solar, storage, electric vehicle charging facilities, or a hybrid integration of these technologies. This opportunity offers up to $750,000 total for up to 12 selected projects. 

The deadline to submit applications is 4 p.m. ET on March 21, 2023.

New Analysis Reveals Surging Interconnection Costs and Demands

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (LBNL) analysis of the PJM Interconnection, funded in part by DOE’s i2X, found substantial interconnection cost increases and tremendous growth of PJM’s interconnection project queue. Learn what factors are driving these increases and other trends in electric capacity queues.

DOE Launches Funding Opportunity to Improve Wind Turbine Composite Materials 

DOE announced $30 million in funding to advance composite materials and additive manufacturing for large wind turbines, including for offshore wind energy systems. This funding opportunity seeks to improve the manufacturability and performance of composite materials—materials made up of multiple constituents, such as polymers and fibers. Projects funded through this initiative will help address the priorities established in DOE’s Offshore Wind Supply Chain Road Map and Floating Offshore Wind Shot™, as well as the Biden administration’s goals to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030 and achieve a net-zero carbon economy by 2050. 

Distributed Wind Turbine Certification Just Got a Little Easier

Certification is an important step for the commercial deployment of small- and medium-scale wind turbines that produce distributed wind energy, which is used in homes, schools, farms, and remote communities at or near where it is generated. Certification verifies that the technology meets international standards—but the process can be complicated and costly for smaller companies. 

DOE just made the certification process more accessible to small manufacturers by covering the cost of preliminary reviews for certification.

Wind Energy End of Service Guide Now Available

WETO's WINDExchange initiative has launched a new web resource to provide information on the repowering or decommissioning processes for wind turbines and their related infrastructure. With over 70,000 turbines currently installed and more being deployed across the United States to reach state and federal renewable energy goals, the Wind Energy End of Service Guide can help communities better understand what happens when a wind energy project reaches the end of its service.

DOE Program Will Offer Technical Assistance for On-Site Energy, Including Wind 

DOE’s Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization Office announced a $23 million funding opportunity that intends to establish a regional network of Onsite Energy Technical Assistance Partnerships to help industrial facilities and other large energy users increase the adoption of onsite energy technologies.

With this announcement, DOE is soliciting applications from entities with expertise in onsite energy—including with distributed wind—who are interested in providing technical assistance services as part of the regional network. The program will accelerate the integration and deployment of clean energy technologies to drive decarbonization, productivity, and competitiveness in the U.S. industrial sector.

"DOE Issues Funding Opportunity to launch onsite energy technical assistance partnerships" Applications due: April 21, 2023.


Floating Offshore Wind Shot Summit 🌬️🌊

Conference: Feb. 22–23, 2023, Virtual

The Floating Offshore Wind Shot Summit is right around the corner! 

This two-day virtual summit hosted by the Departments of Energy, the Interior, Transportation, and Commerce will feature discussions on the Floating Offshore Wind Shot, an ambitious initiative to reduce the coast of floating offshore wind energy by at least 70% by 2035. Speakers will include Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, Assistant to the President and National Climate Advisor Ali Saidi, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland, Rear Admiral of Transportation Ann Phillips, and many others, including policy makers, experts, community leaders, and innovators. Learn more and sign up—it’s free! The deadline to register is 3 p.m. ET on Feb. 17, 2023.  

Distributed Wind 2023

Conference: Feb. 27–March 1, 2023, Arlington, VA, and Virtual

Let’s talk distributed wind energy! Learn about new technology, services, and business opportunities from industry experts and federal leaders—including WETO’s own Patrick Gilman, Distributed Wind Energy Association President Mike Bergey, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Mark Bolinger, National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Suzanne McDonald, Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Mitchelle Rencheck, Sandia National Laboratory’s Rachid Darbali-Zamora, and many others—regarding the distributed wind energy industry. Whether you attend in person or virtually, this is an event not to miss for the distributed wind energy community. 

Northwest Offshore Wind Conference

Conference: Feb. 28–Mar. 1, 2023, Portland, OR 

The Pacific Ocean Energy Trust will host experts and leaders from around the Pacific Northwest for a two-day deep dive into offshore wind energy. Attendees will include members of wind energy development companies, government agencies, national labs, universities, and the nonprofit sector.  

ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit

Conference: Mar. 22–24, 2023, Washington, D.C. 

This three-day conference and technology showcase brings together experts from multiple disciplines and professional communities to think about America’s energy challenges. Innovation is the name of the game at this event as we aim to move transformational energy technologies from the lab to the market. 

Offshore Wind Supply Chain and Workforce Webinar

Webinar: March 2, 2023, 1 p.m. ET, Virtual

Join WETO’s WINDExchange initiative for a webinar on the current state and future needs of the U.S. offshore wind energy workforce and supply chain. Learn more about the increasing demands on manufacturing, ports, vessels, and related gaps and opportunities for a domestic workforce and a detailed analysis presented by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s recent workforce and supply chain reports. Register to attend the webinar—even if you can’t make the live event! After the webinar, a recording will be sent to all registrants.

2023 International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum

Conference: March 28–30, 2023, Baltimore, MD

Hosted by the Business Network for Offshore Wind, this three-day offshore wind energy conference will consist of panels and presentations that will bring together the global offshore wind industry and offer the latest in educational content. Stop by DOE’s booth, #640, to learn about WETO’s latest DOE-funded research and newest offshore wind energy initiatives.

In Case You Missed It