Calling All Coders: Help Advance America’s Wave Power Industry

With more than 50% of the nation’s population living within 50 miles of coastlines, we have vast potential to provide clean, renewable electricity to communities and cities across the United States using marine and hydrokinetic (MHK) technologies.

To help this emerging industry develop new models and tools that improve the design, development, and optimization of wave energy devices, the Energy Department’s Water Power Program is kicking off the second round of its Open-WARP (Open Wave Analysis and Response Program) Challenge. This innovative challenge brings together experts in data, business, and energy from academia and the public and private sectors to move the needle forward on water power.

A collaboration with NASA’s Center of Excellence for Collaborative Innovation and Harvard Business School, Open-WARP is a software coding competition, open to the public, that draws on the expertise of members of TopCoder, one of the world’s largest community of programmers, to develop a computational model for calculating the response of a wave energy converter (WEC) device to waves with given heights and periods.

With support from the Energy Department, TopCoder is running Open-WARP, which is a series of contests that will enable hydrodynamics and device components to be simulated in separate modules. By competing on the online TopCoder platform, coders can show off their skills and win cash prizes on several topics including conceptualization, data analysis, and graphical user interface (GUI) creation.

Each contest serves to further improve the Open-WARP code, which will become a part of Wave Energy Converter Simulation (WEC-Sim), an open-source software package being developed at the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories, which will simulate the performance of WEC designs in generating electric power. The open-source WEC-Sim project, launched by the Department’s Water Power Program last year, aims to develop simulation tools to address analytical and modeling gaps in the WEC research and development community, and to help the MHK industry by accelerating the development, analysis and certification of WEC system designs at lower cost.

To register for Open-WARP contests and learn more about the challenge, go to topcoder.com/doe. Also, explore the Water Power Program’s ongoing research and development work related to MHK technologies.

Source: EERE Water

For more information on: EERE Water