College of the North Atlantic’s Wave Energy Research Centre (WERC) was one of six research projects highlighted during a presentation to more than 50 federal ministers and dignitaries on Parliament Hill yesterday.
The event was the fifth in a series of successful gatherings organized by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), a major funder of all six projects. Senior researchers from across Canada were invited by NSERC and Senator Kelvin K. Ogilvie, Chair of the Social Affairs, Science and Technology Senate Committee, to informally share their work with decision-makers.
WERC Project Administrator, Dr. Michael Graham, and CNA Biology instructor and co-researcher, Leon Fiander, made the trek to Ottawa to provide the parliamentarians with a history and overview of the facility, located in Lord’s Cove on the province’s Burin Peninsula.
“It was a tremendous opportunity to provide federal dignitaries with an understanding of the advances our centre has made in the renewable energy sector, and to also speak about what we have in store over the coming years as we continue to break new ground,” said Dr. Graham. “We have been working on this project for a number of years and we are constantly discovering new and exciting possibilities for wave powered technology.”
Lord’s Cove is home to some of the largest shore-bound waves and storm surges that the island of Newfoundland witnesses each year. A unique combination of geography in the surrounding area and technological capability at the nearby Burin campus means the location is the ‘perfect storm’ for wave energy research.
The five-year project is focusing on developing an economical wave powered pump to deliver sea water to an on-shore aquaculture farm, and on developing the methods and technology necessary for land-based multi-trophic aquaculture farming (species of different levels of the same food chain working together to sustain an aquaculture environment).
We are so pleased this research has been showcased on a national level” said CNA President and CEO, Ann Marie Vaughan. “Harnessing the power of the ocean to produce a clean, natural and renewable energy source for the development of onshore aquaculture farms is something that will become a reality in the not too distant future. There are also numerous applications for wave powered energy – and the centre realizes the immense potential this poses to various sectors.”
To support the research, significant work has been done at the WERC site in Lord’s Cove, including building and wharf renovations, installation of piping, and data acquisition and telecommunications equipment.
“We have made the site more than just a research facility,” said Dr. Graham. “It now has the ability to host businesses or organizations interested in testing their sea-based technologies in an actual naturally-extreme environment setting or by utilizing our resources to test integrated multi-trophic aquaculture research projects.”
To learn more about what the Wave Energy Research Centre is doing, visit their Facebook page for video and additional information, or visit www.cna.nl.ca and click Research & Innovation.
College of the North Atlantic