OPT's Dunleavy: Wave gear isn't missing

Ocean Power Technologies announced Thursday plans to deploy its PowerBuoy technology off the coast of Reedsport next spring.

Ocean Power Technologies' CEO says a wave energy buoy component reported as missing is actually just a little more submerged than the company had projected.  

Ocean Power Technologies Inc.’s CEO said a component used to help convert power from ocean waves into energy is floating a little bit deeper than the company had envisioned.

But that doesn’t mean the part, called an anchor float, is lost, said Chuck Dunleavy, who leads the Pennington, N.J.-based company. Dunleavy disputed reports that the piece, actually a line that leads from an anchor on the ocean’s bottom to a buoy on the surface, had turned up missing.

“Nothing’s been lost,” Dunleavy said. “We’ve seen it with a fishfinder, we just need to make sure we know where it is depth-wise.”

Dunleavy had hoped to set aside concerns that the lost anchor float indicated flaws in his company’s wave energy model. The company plans to continue work on the so-called “wave energy park” that will contain 10 buoys set to be installed as part of a 35-year license. The 1.5 megawatt project sits some two miles off the south-central Oregon coastal town of Reedsport.

Each of the 10 buoys is expected to power around 1,000 homes.

Dunleavy said the anchor float’s location isn’t an issue in terms of how much power the buoys could eventually generate.

“It happens all the time in marine operations,” he said. “Things move a little higher or lower in the water.”

The company is sending a remote-operated vehicle to check on the float's location once the weather breaks, Dunleavy said.

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