U.S. Department of Energy Marine Energy Collegiate Competition (MECC)
Team Name: Juracan Energy
Universidad Ana G. Mendez, Puerto Rico
- Poster: Buoy Pump for Water Desalination
- Report: Universidad Ana G. Mendez, Gurabo Campus, Juracan Energy Business and Technical Report
- Presentation: Desalination in the Blue Economy Business Plan
- Recording of virtual team presentation
Why this competition?
Juracan Energy debuted at the Collegiate Wind Competition 2016 with a mission of providing a reliable, cost-effective, and off-the-grid alternative to electric street and highway illumination in Puerto Rico.
Redefining its mission in September 2017 following the destruction of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, Juracan Energy is now dedicated to developing a marine-energy-driven solution for providing drinking water to isolated communities and communities needing disaster relief. The team’s participation in the U.S. Department of Energy Marine Energy Collegiate Competition (MECC) will also bring greater visibility to the importance of providing these communities with clean drinking water.
The team’s focus is researching and developing a commercially viable desalination solution to provide drinking water for isolated communities, communities with unreliable electric grids, and communities needing disaster relief. Juracan Energy’s reverse-osmosis desalination system will be powered by marine energy.
The team’s plan of action is structured around three key concepts: publicity, money, and research.
Resources such as water are scarce, especially on a small island, which is why bringing attention to the issue is important. To accomplish this, the team will lead K-12 educational programs and community events to raise awareness of the importance of marine-related research.
Understanding that funding is essential for its success, the team will devote time to raising money to support its efforts.
Finally, the team will focus on researching and developing a commercially viable marine-energy-powered desalination solution.
Juracan Energy's most substantial strength is the shared experiences and friendships that bond the team and unite them toward achieving a shared goal. The Ana G. Mendez University comprises passionate and remarkable students who challenge themselves and who support their community. As individuals, team members are proud and motivated to effect change in and represent their culturally rich and diverse community.
The island’s current economic state and its recent environmental disasters represent the greatest challenges the team faces. Puerto Rico's weak economy makes it difficult to obtain grants and funding sponsorships, a situation further impacted by the likelihood of future catastrophic weather events. Juracan Energy is ready to move ahead despite these obstacles.
Participation in the MECC offers countless opportunities for personal and academic growth. MECC will bring marine energy-based research and resources to the institution, and the team will use the competition to inspire current and future generations to pursue an education focused on marine energy.
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This portal is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO) under Contract Number DE- AC36-08GO28308 with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Contract Number DE-AC05-76RL01830 with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Contract Number DE-NA0003525 with Sandia National Laboratories, as part of the MHK Data Communities project. The United States Government retains, and the publisher, by accepting the article for publication, acknowledges that the United States Government retains a non-exclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, world-wide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this manuscript, or allow others to do so, for United States Government purposes.