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Semi-Annual Newsletter
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As summer turns into fall, we look back on a year that has much improved from last year for Makai. Our ocean energy team is building a new facility for fabricating marine heat exchangers in Kona (more to come in a future issue…) and testing our OTEC turbine-generator and controls. Our cable team made several commercial sales and is now developing hardware to handle micro fiber optic cables. And finally, our design team has been busy on a cooling water intake design, some seawater air conditioning (SWAC) work, and more. We bid adieu to our summer intern (thanks Courtney!) and are looking forward to welcoming more talent to the team.  
And by the way, we’re still hiring! Makai is seeking at least two and up to three talented mechanical or ocean engineers to join our team. To see your future work place from the air, check out the video here!

If you like what you see please share it with a friend. We hope you enjoy!
With Aloha,

The MOE Team
Cooling Water Intakes
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A photo of part of the cooling water intakes being fabricated this summer.
Here’s an “I Spy” challenge: Find the person in the photo for a sense of scale of these massive intake structures! Photo credit: Intake Screens Inc.
Do you recall the cooling water intake project that we mentioned in the March 2016 newsletter?

Well, it has developed from a concept in our engineers’ heads, to a 3D model on a computer, and now to the machine shop floor! The cooling water intake structures pictured here were built this summer, with an expected installation date of Fall 2016.

This cooling intake system serves a power plant and operates at over 100,000 gallons per minute, which requires a new array of screen assemblies totaling several thousand square feet of screen area and weighing more than 50 tons.

In designing this cooling water system, Makai applied our marine engineering and construction expertise, along with state-of-the-art computational fluid dynamics, 3D structural design, and finite-element analysis techniques. The final design is both hydraulically and structurally efficient, but is also cost-effective and designed to be easily constructed and installed by marine contractors.

Makai worked closely with Intake Screens Inc. and other subcontractors on the project. Our team is delivering a custom solution for the client that meets their strict hydraulic limitations, their budget, as well as the stringent EPA 316b guidelines that will help to preserve the marine ecosystem. Stay tuned for pictures of the construction and installation…

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Makai Wins State of Hawaii Matching Grants to Support Federal R & D
Makai competed for and was awarded $725,000 worth of State of Hawaii grants from the High Technology Development Corporation (HTDC) to match our ongoing federal R&D projects. In support of Makai’s ongoing work for the Office of Naval Research, Makai was awarded $400,000 to continue development of marine heat exchangers that can be applied to Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) systems, as well as a variety of other military and commercial applications that use seawater for cooling. In support of our ongoing autonomous underwater vehicle project, Makai was awarded $325,000 to help with the design, building and testing of the next generation of our underwater vehicle. These projects will be performed entirely in Hawaii, and will produce high value technology products that can be marketed and exported to U.S. and international customers, supporting the HTDC mission to develop and retain a high tech workforce in Hawaii.
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Micro Fiber Optic Cables
Makai has been working on an exciting new technology to reliably handle micro fiber optic cables in the ocean. These tiny cables are typically less than 1 millimeter in diameter and can rapidly send large volumes of data between subsea sensors, vehicles and other assets. This project builds on our work with modeling and testing high-strength, thin fiber optic cables for sonobuoys and hardware development during our autonomous underwater vehicle project. Makai is developing a device capable of repeatedly paying out and retrieving very long lengths (many miles) of these tiny cables while carefully level-winding and controlling their tension to prevent damaging the optical integrity of the fibers. We see this as a key enabling technology for establishing short-term, ad-hoc underwater communication networks.
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The workflow of MakaiLay being used at-sea in real-time to accurately and safely install subsea cable.

Makai Subsea Cable Software Sales
Makai has seen a recent uptick in sales of our subsea cable software MakaiPlan (route engineering), MakaiPlan Pro (installation planning), and MakaiLay (real-time cable installation software). These tools help to simplify the lives of cable route engineers and installers.
Makai’s recent sales include:
  • CSCC – China Submarine Cable Construction Co. (China) purchased a license of MakaiLay,
  • KCS - Kokusai Cable Ship Co., Ltd. (Japan) purchased a MakaiPlan Pro,
  • GD – General Dynamics (USA) purchased an additional MakaiPlan Pro,
  • ALDA Marine (France) purchased by other consultants.
  • ...And mutltiple MakaiPlan licenses were pruchased by other consultants.
MakaiPlan is the world’s #1 cable route planning and engineering software, with over 300 licenses sold over the last 15 years.

MakaiPlan Pro is powerful and precise 3D, dynamic simulation software used to identify installation risks and prepare a detailed installation plan before ever going to sea.

MakaiLay is the world’s #1 subsea cable installation software. It enables cable ship operators to lay submarine cables with the highest level of accuracy, speed, safety, and reliability possible today, dramatically reducing the risk of cable failures. The software has been used by over 75% of the global fleet of cable ships on countless commercial lays and military installations to successfully install well over 400,000 km of cable worldwide.
Click for all things Cable!
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Makai sponsored a University of Hawaii team of 10 mechanical engineering undergraduate students (left) to build a functioning lab-scale OTEC system (right).

Community Outreach: OTEC Lab-Scale Project
Makai sponsored a team University of Hawaii at Manoa – College of Engineering students to design and build an Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) lab-scale demonstration system. The team of 10 mechanical engineering undergraduate students designed the entire system from scratch using principles they have learned in their studies, such as fluid dynamics, heat transfer, thermodynamics, mechanics of materials, and more. They selected a working fluid (R-134a) that boils using room temperature water as a heat source (simulating the surface ocean water), and condenses using ice water as a heat sink (simulating the deep ocean water). They designed and built a fully functioning system, complete with heat exchangers, pressure and temperature gauges, warm/cold water pumps, no working fluid pump (used thermo-siphoning instead), and a miniature turbine-generator. The system was even able to generate enough power to light a few LEDs – great job team!

The OTEC lab-scale system has been donated to Friends of NELHA, and now lives at the Gateway Center near the entrance to NELHA in Kailua-Kona. It will be used to enhance awareness and understanding of OTEC, ocean energy, and STEM in general for the thousands of school children and adults who visit NELHA every year, so check it out if you’re able. This project is part of Makai’s ongoing efforts to give back to our community, and to help prepare the next generation of local engineering talent for the workforce.
Employee Spotlight:

Greg Rocheleau, M.S.

Ocean Engineering Division Manager & Ocean Engineer  
Mr. Greg Rocheleau began working at Makai in 2009 as an ocean engineer and oceanographer. Since 2014 he has taken a leadership role in the company as the Manager of the Ocean Engineering Division. He was the project manager for the large power plant cooling water intake system design shown above, and was responsible for the oversight of all aspects of the mechanical design and analysis, as well as the wave/current forces, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling.

Mr. Rocheleau was the lead engineer for the NextEra Interisland Power Cable route selection project for a 200 MW deep-sea power cable in 2014. He was also the lead engineer for the hydro-mechanical modeling and repair of a deep seawater intake pipeline (1 meter diameter, 670 meters deep) at NELHA.

Mr. Rocheleau is the lead oceanographer at Makai responsible for all metocean data collection, analysis, and modeling at the company. He was the lead engineer for the research and numerical modeling of Makai’s OTEC Plume Model (2009-2012), which involved development of a sophisticated fluid dynamics software to simulate the physical, chemical, and biological impacts of several large-flow seawater discharges. More recently, he led the metocean analysis and modeling efforts during a defense project, which involved extracting and deriving spatially and temporally (4D) varying current and density data from Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) and Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) generated outputs.

Mr. Rocheleau earned his master’s degree in Physical Oceanography from the University of Hawaii, and his bachelor’s degree (with honors) in Chemical and Biological Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Mr. Rocheleau is one of several of Makai’s engineers originally from Hawaii, growing up in Honolulu and attending Punahou High School. In his spare time he enjoys surfing and spending time with his wife Sarah and his two little boys, Reef and Jackson.

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What are you working on?
If you have a project related to the ocean, we can probably help.
We are nimble, creative, cost-effective, and most importantly, our designs last.
We'd love to discuss your project that might involve: 

Subsea Pipe / Cable Systems
  • Pipeline designs
  • Cable designs
  • Micro fiber optic cable systems
  • Cable planning and installation software and services
  • Survey support
Energy Systems
  • Cooling water intake and screen designs
  • Heat exchangers
  • Bottoming cycle power plant designs
  • Energy storage designs
  • Offshore wind / wave / tidal engineering
  • District cooling designs
  • Engineering & economic modeling
Marine Vehicles & Buoys
  • Underwater vehicle design
  • Sonobuoy component design
  • Submarine Launch, Recovery, Transport vehicles
  • Naval architecture
General Engineering Support
  • Corrosion R&D and testing
  • Materials testing
  • Environmental consulting
  • Physics-based modeling
  • Software development
  • GIS software and services
  • Value engineering
Please call or email us today for a free consultation about your project.
Contact a Makai Ocean Engineer!
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© 2016 Makai Ocean Engineering, Inc.
41-305 Kalanianaole Hwy, Waimanalo, Hawaii 96795 USA
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