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Wind Energy Technologies Office


May 2, 2023

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

Deadlines Blowing In 💨

Icon with a wind turbine and people in front of it.

Did You Know?

The Biden-Harris Administration aims to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030—a target that will create jobs for tens of thousands of workers.

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

R&D Feature

New and Improved: Facilities Expand U.S. Offshore Wind Energy Testing Capabilities

A student wearing a hard hat and waterproof attire sits on a structural beam above a tank of water.

Researchers at Lehigh University, Clemson University, and Oregon State University, funded by the Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO), have developed hybrid testing—which combines the benefits of both physical field tests and computerized simulations—to capture the broadest, most reliable information about offshore wind energy systems. These facilities test interactions between offshore wind turbine foundations and their surrounding soil, the reliability of wind turbine gearboxes, and how waves affect offshore and coastal structures.

“Our hope is that these facilities can support a nationwide capability for testing offshore wind energy technologies,” said Monica Maher, WETO offshore wind energy specialist. “This will help the United States reach its national goal of achieving 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030 and further inspire industry trust in offshore wind energy systems.”


Applications for the 2024 Collegiate Wind Competition Are Open

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is now accepting applications for the 2024 Collegiate Wind Competition. The 2024 competition will take place in three phases over the course of the 2023–2024 school year and will culminate at a final event in spring 2024. Interested schools should apply by June 15, 2023.

Two students adjust a model wind turbine. "We’re looking for the next generation of wind energy professionals!"

As DOE invites students to apply to participate in next year’s competition, 13 teams from across the United States are gearing up for the 2023 CWC final event, which will take place May 15–19, 2023, in Boulder, Colorado. Want to meet the next generation of wind energy professionals in person? Members of the wind industry, as well as faculty and students interested in the competition, are welcome. Register to attend by May 14, 2023.

 Learn about how student competitions support a diverse clean energy workforce.

Ocean Energy Safety Institute Requests Proposals on Offshore Wind Energy

The Ocean Energy Safety Institute (OESI) has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) worth up to $2.8 million for improved safety in the offshore wind industry. OESI is a DOE-funded consortium of industry, national labs, nongovernmental organizations, and academia created to develop the technology and workforce needed for increased energy production that is safer, more sustainable, and more cost-effective. Together with the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, DOE serves as a key collaboration partner in OESI activities by providing a public sector perspective that ensures activities address funding intent, priorities, and objectives. The two target areas for this RFP are: 

  • Safe installation, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of offshore wind energy systems.
  • Reduction of human exposure to hazards during installation, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of offshore wind energy systems.

The deadline to submit proposals is 11 p.m. CST on July 24, 2023

Sandia National Laboratories Reflects on Last Year’s Accomplishments

Overlain a graphic of a wind turbine are the words, “Sandia Wind Energy Program, FY22 Accomplishments.” and the Sandia National Laboratories logo.

Sandia National Laboratories’ Wind Energy Program has released its Wind Energy Program FY22 Accomplishments Report. The portfolio consists of projects funded by WETO and other DOE offices. Sandia's Wind Energy Program currently structures research in five areas: rotor innovations and operations, offshore design optimization, wind plant data science and artificial intelligence, grid integration and power systems, and solutions to national security technology barriers.

The accomplishments were made possible through capabilities investments by WETO, internal Sandia investment, and partnerships between Sandia and other national laboratories, universities, and research institutions around the world.

The Grid of the Future Looks Bright… and Windy ☀️🌬️

A new study from DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory shows that power generation and energy storage in the transmission interconnection queues across the United States continues to grow dramatically, with over 2,000 gigawatts of total generation and storage capacity currently seeking connection to the grid. Solar and wind energy make up the majority of this number—in fact, combined, the two currently seek enough grid interconnection capacity to nearly match that of the current U.S. power plant fleet. This news is a great indicator of a major energy transition, but with this large backlog of new energy projects comes a host of issues hindering progress. Learn more about these challenges and the promising solutions that are already underway.

We’re Big Fans💨 of This News

Hiring boom: A two-year degree lands a green energy job that pays ‘a pretty penny’

USA Today reporter Elizabeth Weise writes on the growing need across the country for wind energy technicians and the two-year community college programs that are trying to keep up with the demand from employers.

From GE to Siemens, the wind energy industry hopes billions in losses are about to end

CNBC reporter Bob Woods interviews WETO Program Manager Patrick Gilman on macroeconomic conditions that have impacted land-based and offshore wind projects, and how the Inflation Reduction Act is encouraging a positive outlook amongst energy companies and the future of wind manufacturing in the United States.  

Clean Energy Champions

Meet Clean Energy Champion Chris Meinig

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Director of Coastal Sciences Division Chris Meinig.

This month’s Clean Energy Champion is Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Director of Coastal Sciences Division Chris Meinig! Filling this role since 2022, Meinig sees the national laboratories and the combined federal research enterprise as having a critical role in meeting the 30 gigawatt-by-2030 offshore wind goal. That role is to provide objective information for strong scientific bases that industry can build upon. Meinig is confident: “I feel optimistic that the national labs will rise to the challenge.”


Floating Offshore Wind Shot Workshop

Workshop: May 8, 2023, 9 a.m. PT, Sacramento, CA

Before the Pacific Offshore Wind Summit is kicked off, head over to the Natural Resources Building in Sacramento for an in-person workshop to discuss the Floating Offshore Wind Shot™ R&D and development priorities. Breakout sessions covering cost reduction; supply chain development, transmission; expanded, just and sustainable development; and co-generation will help inform prioritization and sequencing of Shot-related activities.  

This in-person workshop is part of a broader hybrid event sponsored by the California Energy Commission. The entire event is a free, public event but due to building capacity limitations we strongly urge you to RSVP in advance to attend in-person.

Pacific Offshore Wind Summit 2023

Conference: May 8–10, 2023, Sacramento, CA

The Pacific Offshore Wind Summit 2023 will explore how the U.S. West Coast states can stay on track to establish a sustainable floating wind industry and supply chain that will generate jobs and economic development for decades. Building on the Floating Offshore Wind Shot Workshop, DOE’s Jocelyn Brown-Saracino will provide an overview of the future of floating offshore wind in the United States, and the Floating Offshore Wind Shot and the many recent programs and resources that support it. Additionally, DOE’s Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm will be giving recorded remarks! Other notable speakers include the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s Director Liz Klein and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s principal engineer and offshore wind research lead Walt Musial—plus many more.

Collegiate Wind Competition 2023

Competition: May 15–19, 2023, Boulder, CO

Join the U.S. Department of Energy Collegiate Wind Competition 2023 final event, where multidisciplinary teams of college students will network with members of the wind industry, test their wind turbine prototypes, and present their wind turbine designs, wind energy project development plans, and outreach efforts to panels of experts. Register to attend by May 14, 2023.

CLEANPOWER 2023 Conference and Exhibition 

Conference: May 22–25, 2023, New Orleans, LA 

The American Clean Power Association’s annual conference will feature panels, presentations, workshops, and poster sessions on the renewable energy industry, including land-based wind energy, offshore wind energy, distributed wind energy, solar power, energy storage, and transmission. Be sure to stop by DOE’s booth, #1623, to discuss all the latest wind R&D with our team! Find more information on the event website.

Transmission and Interconnection Summit 2023

Conference: June 12–14, 2023, Arlington, VA

The Transmission & Interconnection Summit 2023 will bring together the leading policymakers, senior executives, and leading experts, including DOE’s Jian Fu who will kick off the conference, working to reimagine interconnection and transmission planning processes to meet the needs of the clean energy transition. 

American Floating Offshore Wind Technical Summit 2023

Conference: Sept. 26–27, 2023, Portland, ME, and Virtual

This 2-day conference brings together industry, academia, and government floating offshore wind experts from around the world to chart a course for domestic floating offshore wind energy. Whether in person or virtually, join this event to participate in discussions on the technical, regulatory, and permitting challenges that must be addressed to unlock floating offshore wind energy’s significant potential. 

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