Tidal energy—one of the fastest growing emerging technologies in the renewable sector—holds great promise for clean energy generation. And now, a first of its kind database gives researchers deeper insight into the potential of this vast energy resource for the United States.
The online database, developed at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) with the help of a $469,500 award from the U.S. Department of Energy, maps the energy available in the nation’s tidal streams. Researchers at Georgia Tech’s Savannah campus used the Regional Ocean Model to simulate tidal flows along the entire U.S. coastline, which is marked by thousands of streams, rivers and bays subject to daily tides. DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory validated the model’s accuracy and the resulting data are now publically available.