U.S. cleantech incubator Greentown Labs, and offshore wind developer Vineyard Wind have started accepting applications for their Offshore Wind Challenge.
Greentown Labs and Vineyard Wind are seeking submissions from startups that are innovating in marine mammal monitoring, either surrounding data collection and real-time transmission or data analysis.
The Offshore Wind Challenge is a six-month accelerator program housed at Greentown Labs in Somerville, Mass., and is focused on fast-tracking entrepreneurs with the mentors and business and technical resources they need to launch or scale successful ventures with direct support from Vineyard Wind.
"The Offshore Wind Challenge is for startups with a technology readiness level between three and six and a proof of concept that can be brought to a state of practice. The Challenge will be supported by experts from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and the New England Aquarium," Greentown Labs explained in a statement on Thursday.
Vineyard Wind is developing the first utility-scale offshore wind project 15 miles off the coast of Massachusetts, which will eliminate 1.68 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
Lars T. Pedersen, CEO of Vineyard Wind. "There is a very real opportunity for innovation regarding the data associated with marine mammal monitoring and we are fortunate to be working with a talented Greentown Labs team to engage with startups and entrepreneurs on this initiative.
"The offshore wind industry presents an incredible opportunity for the northeast United States and Greentown Labs is thrilled to partner with Vineyard Wind to identify technologies that will simultaneously protect marine life in our oceans and advance the industry," said Emily Reichert, CEO of Greentown Labs.
"Many of the species that regularly use the wind energy areas off the coast of Massachusetts are either experiencing significant population decline or are endangered, including the North Atlantic right whale. That means we need to be extra conscious of the project's human impact," said Vikki N. Spruill, President and CEO of the New England Aquarium.
"The Aquarium looks forward to supporting this program to better understand the impact of wind energy development on our ocean life."
Applications for the Offshore Wind Challenge are due by May 31 at 11:59 p.m. ET.