A student team from Purdue University led by assistant professor of mechanical engineering David Warsinger won first place in the Marine Energy Collegiate Competition, a contest sponsored by the US Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). The team was comprised of students from mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, environmental and ecological engineering, and the Krannert School of Management.
The design competition asked students to create a project that utilized marine energy technologies in a real-world setting. Purdue’s team created a system that uses wave energy to power a batch reverse osmosis system, creating fresh water out of seawater by using the sea’s own waves as a renewable energy source.
“This system would be ideal for remote developing island states,” said Warsinger. “They get a sustainable source of clean water, and don’t have to rely on generators that are expensive and contribute to climate change.”
The award was announced in April by DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory at the virtual 2021 International Conference on Ocean Energy. The team presented their solution at the closing plenary session.