From Open Energy Information

Alaska Hydrokinetic Energy Research Center (AHERC)

AHERC's Role The Alaska Hydrokinetic Research Center (AHERC) focuses on applied research and engineering to help communities, developers and other stakeholders address the questions of whether emerging hydrokinetic energy technologies are economically, technologically and environmentally sustainable.

To this end, AHERC conducts environmental and technical studies evaluating available hydrokinetic energy resources, turbulent flows and their effects on device power output and longevity, fisheries and marine mammal studies, habitat studies, approaches to anchoring hydrokinetic infrastructure and debris mitigation, and other issues pertinent to developing an Alaska hydrokinetic power industry.

AHERC is housed within the Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP) at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). AHERC and ACEP are based in the Institute of Northern Engineering (INE), the research and development arm of the College of Engineering and Mines (CEM) at UAF.

AHERC Research The goal of AHERC’s research is to provide information, methods, and technology to advance and accelerate the hydrokinetic industry and determine its applicability in Alaska. We focus on the responsible development, acceptance, and deployment of hydrokinetic devices. Our goals are guided by input from industry, state and federal agencies, and community stakeholders.

Tanana River Hydrokinetic Test Site AHERC’s Tanana River Hydrokinetic Test Site is used to test hydrokinetic power generating devices, related technologies, and to characterize the river environment under realistic Alaska river conditions.

Researchers and industrial clients can use the test site to assess interaction between hydrokinetic devices and the environment in a controlled fashion at a well characterized site. Examples include fish interactions, debris management, turbine placement, hydrodynamic analysis, sediment transport and icing. Information collected from these studies is also used by permitting agencies to inform and streamline their decision making process.

Contact Information:

Brent Sheets • Research Manager • Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP) • (907) 474-1194 •

Jerome Johnson • AHERC Faculty Director • Institute of Northern Engineering • (907) 474-1986 •

Jeremy Kasper • AHERC Assistant Faculty Director • Institute of Northern Engineering • (907) 474-5694 •

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