Ocean energy solutions developer Ocean Power Technologies, Inc. has expanded its suite of complimentary products that leverage the core technology of the PowerBuoy, which include subsea batteries and a hybrid (liquid-fueled) PowerBuoy.
George H. Kirby, President and Chief Executive Officer of OPT, said, “Our team has been working diligently to identify opportunities to leverage our technologies to address the needs of current and potential customers in subsea environments. These new product offerings provide OPT with the means to better serve customers by expanding its product and service offerings. In addition, this allows us the opportunity to have broader discussions during each customer visit, providing more comprehensive solutions and further establishing our credibility and our ability to address each unique market.
“Our new products, subsea batteries and the hybrid PowerBuoy, along with our existing PB3 PowerBuoy and backed by our existing support services, provide more comprehensive solutions that can meet the needs of more customers requiring reliable power and communications in their subsea work across the globe.”
OPT’s entry into the subsea battery market presents a complementary product to the PB3. Given OPT’s expertise in offshore energy storage systems from existing PB3 technology, the subsea batteries will provide an opportunity for OPT to differentiate through technical, cost and delivery leadership. The specialized knowledge required of pressure regulated battery solutions can create a significant barrier to entry, thus potentially making the probability of new entrants quite low.
Subsea batteries create a sea floor energy storage solution for remote offshore operations. These subsea batteries use lithium ion batteries (often replacing traditional lead acid batteries) to supply power that can enable subsea equipment, sensors, communications and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) and electric remotely operated vehicles (eROV) recharge. OPT’s PB3 PowerBuoy is complimentary to subsea batteries by providing a means for recharging during longer term deployments, or the batteries can be used independently for shorter term deployments. Ideal for many remote offshore customer applications, these subsea batteries are anticipated to be high performance, cost-efficient, and quickly deployable. Although OPT’s subsea battery solutions are currently under development, OPT has already begun marketing its subsea battery solutions to potential customers around the world and anticipates quoting to customers as early as the first quarter of calendar year 2019.
The hybrid PowerBuoy will be a smaller liquid-fueled surface buoy, with significant energy storage and capable of providing reliable power in remote offshore locations. This product is to be highly complementary to the PB3 PowerBuoy by providing OPT the opportunity to address a broader spectrum of customer deployment needs, with the potential for greater OPT integration within each customer project. It is primarily intended for shorter term deployment applications such as eROV and AUV inspections and short-term maintenance, topside surveillance and communications, and subsea equipment power purposes.
The hybrid PowerBuoy will be a light weight and quickly deployable option specially designed as a cost-effective solution. It will have a high payload capacity for communications and surveillance, with the capability of being tethered to subsea payloads and battery packs, and/or PB3 PowerBuoys, or with a conventional anchor mooring system. The hybrid PowerBuoy will be designed to outperform traditional diesel buoys, which we believe have more frequent service and refueling intervals. We believe the hybrid PowerBuoy will be able to operate for years without service, with no internal combustion engine, using environmentally safer and more robust fuels, while operating in a wider temperature range than diesel buoys. Although OPT’s hybrid PowerBuoy is currently being developed, OPT has already begun marketing it to potential customers around the world and anticipates quoting to customers as early as the first half of calendar year 2019.
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