NJ Seeks New Wind Institute for Offshore Wind Research
No, that’s not the clarinet and saxophone sections in the band. New Jersey’s Economic Development Authority (EDA) released an RFP (request for proposals) on January 7 seeking a “qualified entity to conduct a feasibility study for a world-class, flagship offshore wind research and development (R&D) testing facility as part of the Authority’s strategy to accelerate innovation for the offshore wind industry.” EDA lists three goals for the proposed Institute:
- Establish NJ as a leader in offshore wind technology research and innovation;
- Capitalize on the State’s upcoming extensive wind energy investments; and,
- Kick-start a “robust ecosystem of offshore wind-related innovation activities.”
EDA wants a wind R&D facility on par with Bell Labs, DOE’s Princeton Plasma Physics Lab and the FAA’s Coriell Institute for Medical Research in Camden, the largest stem cell bank in the world.
The Wind Institute is to complement NJ’s ongoing wind energy initiatives. The state’s recent and significant investments include the development of the New Jersey Wind Port, construction of a state-of-the-art monopile manufacturing facility at the Port of Paulsboro, and the issuance of grant funding to support the development of targeted workforce development programs.
The RFP lists three key “deliverables:”
Task 1. Background review on existing offshore wind research and innovation facilities, market analysis to evaluate potential gaps and needs not currently being fulfilled, and evaluation of New Jersey’s competitive advantage to addressing one or more of these gaps.
Task 2. Recommendations of at least three, to a maximum of five, strategies for New Jersey to pursue accompanied by feasibility analysis.
Task 3. Creation of an implementation plan to pursue some or all recommendations identified in Task 2 above. Task 3 is optional and subject to additional Authority decisions.
Proposals from interested companies are due February 23.