Announcement

Selection Date

  • 7/14/2021

NOTA Objective

The objectives of this Notice of Opportunity for Technical Assistance (NOTA) are to: 

  • Provide hydropower decision makers, such as utilities and system operators, with National Lab expertise and capabilities to address challenges and capture opportunities for their systems
  • Validate National Lab-led modeling, analysis, and tools developed under the Water Innovation for a Resilient Electricity System (HydroWIRES) initiative for the benefit of the broader community
  • Further our collective understanding of possible roles for hydropower under evolving power system conditions that reach beyond those considered by most planners and operators today. 

Description

This unique funding partnership will support objective, community-focused research on ocean renewable energy, including offshore wind and hydrokinetic current, tidal, and wave energies, in the U.S. Northeast for the benefit of a diversity of communities and stakeholders. 

With a focus on advancing community and economic resilience, the funding opportunity aims to catalyze proactive socioeconomic and technology research for offshore renewable energy planning in the region. Over $1 million will be available to support research projects across three innovative areas:

  • Fisheries and Fishing Community Resilience
  • Coastal Community and Economic Resilience
  • Co-Location Management of Ocean Renewable Energy with Other Marine Activities.

EERE Selections

Funding Awardees

  • Great River Hydro, Inflow Forecasting on New England’s Great River
    • Great River Hydro is New England's largest conventional hydropower generator, which operates sustainable hydropower systems in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Through this technical assistance project, they are seeking to assess the value of inflow forecasting tools and practices associated with hydropower generating resources on the Connecticut River in New Hampshire and Vermont. Hydropower with reservoir storage provides grid operators with flexible, fast-start, carbon-free generation that enables penetration of other variable renewable resources into the grid. Great River Hydro's innovative operations proposal requires precise inflow forecasting and dispatch planning to succeed. This project aims to improve hydropower operations with probabilistic forecasts, inflow forecasting, and dispatch planning.
  • Idaho Power Company, Idaho Power hydrogen production integration project
    • With 17 hydroelectric plants providing most of their power, Idaho Power Company provides power to more than 590,000 customers. Their project will identify hydrogen production technologies that could be effectively deployed at a hydropower facility to meet energy storage capacity needs and potentially use the oxygen byproduct to help mitigate water quality conditions. Hybrid hydropower-hydrogen production facilities could have significant benefits to transition to non-carbon sources of energy production and deployment. Such projects would facilitate moving hydrogen production from a niche market to a mainstream technology and tool. Moreover, hydrogen production could serve as a controllable load for improving the correlation between electrical load and generation profiles of electrical grids in which a large percentage of the generation is from variable renewable sources.
  • Energy Exemplar, Enhance the representation of conventional hydropower data in production cost models 
    • Energy Exemplar is the developer of PLEXOS, a widely used production cost model in the power system community. Through this project, they seek to improve the representation of hydropower operations to better capture hydropower's complexity and enable better decisions. Their project would strengthen the capability of energy production models to assess economic impacts of hydropower capabilities, as well as peripheral impacts, such as bringing more renewables online, electric vehicle adoption, natural gas, energy storage, and other transmission impacts. Hydropower has the capability of providing some of the flexibility required by the power system, but research is required that pays careful attention to the many constraints on hydropower resources.