Kailua-Kona, HI, U.S.A. --- (METERING.COM) --- June 1, 2012 - The Island of Hawaii will receive more than $400,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy to fund the development and deployment of distributed energy systems at the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority’s (NELHA) Hawaii Ocean Science and Technology Park (HOST Park) in Kailua-Kona.

The funds will be used to analyze how advanced energy technologies could improve energy performance at HOST Park with the development of a small microgrid and to provide related updates to the state of Hawaii's renewable energy and distributed energy resources strategy.

Major components of the project include:

  • Development of a solar energy test bed at the HOST Park research campus
  • An industrial control system for seawater system equipment combined with a system to monitor, collect, and report data about electricity use at NELHA
  • Collection of system and solar resource data at the NELHA site
  • Updating of the Renewable Energy and Distributed Electric Resources Strategy to increase the utilization of the Hawaii Gateway Energy Center.

The DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) serves as a project manager at HOST Park.

“The NREL partnership will allow us to implement a solar test bed at NELHA's research campus and continue to develop distributed energy resources at NELHA,” said Gregory Barbour, NELHA executive director. “We are very grateful to NREL for the opportunity to work more closely with them to better understand the electricity cost and performance for our facilities and especially the seawater distribution system at HOST Park.”

HOST Park is located on 870 acres of coastal property in Kailua-Kona Hawaii, and is focused on developing green economic projects.