COMMERCIALIZATION POTENTIAL OF OPEN CYCLE OCEAN THERMAL ENERGY CONVERSION (OTEC) WATER PLANTS

The report surveys the U.S. need for freshwater in regions which are close to an ocean thermal gradient, and selects a single site which appears to have the greatest potential for a commercially viable seawater desalination plant to be located in near shore waters. The site selected was St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. A conceptual design for an open cycle OTEC plant of 15 million gallons per day (expected plant size for plant to be deployed in year 2005) is described and costed. Possible financing options for the plant are discussed. Capital and operating costs of a conventional multistage flash evaporator and an open cycle OTEC plant are examined with the latter being preferable under all predicted scenarios of capital goods and fuel price escalation and rates of interest on borrowed sums. A novel method of producing fresh water using a closed cycle OTEC power plant in combination with a multistage flash evaporator was also developed. The process appears to offer economic advantages over the open cycle process for small seawater desalination facilities as well as an advantage of being able to be deployed sooner. A 5 and 15 million gallon per day facility is described with deployment of the smaller size taking place in 1990. Return on investment calculations are provided.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Westinghouse Electric Corporation

    Churchill Borough
    Pittsburgh, PA  United States  15235

    Maritime Administration

    Office of Advanced Ship Construction, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Publication Date: 1980

Media Info

  • Pagination: n.p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00331633
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Maritime Administration
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jun 12 1981 12:00AM