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Senior US Army advisor takes renewable energy role as OTE Corporation targets ocean thermal opportunities


Lancaster, PA, USA

Sheldon Hunt, who has served for 12 years as the primary utility consultant and Energy Advisor for the US Army in the Pacific Region, has been appointed Vice-President of Operations for Ocean Thermal Energy Corporation (‘OTE’ or ‘OTE Corporation’), the developer of systems using the natural temperature gradient of the ocean to produce clean, sustainable base-load power and fresh, potable water.

Sheldon Hunt
Sheldon Hunt

Sheldon is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Hawaii with over 20 years’ experience in the Pacific region within the utility, energy and environmental sectors.  As a consultant to the private sector, he has conducted feasibility studies for ocean thermal energy projects in the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans, including the proposed Waikiki seawater district cooling (SDC) project in Hawaii, and worked on the Diego Garcia OTEC (ocean thermal energy conversion) utility service contract proposal for the US Navy.

Based in Honolulu, Hawaii, Sheldon will concentrate his efforts on the installation of SDC and OTEC facilities for the company, with particular focus on utility integration,   facility construction and maintenance management.  Sheldon said: "I am very excited to be an integral part of providing base-load renewable ocean energy for island and coastal communities across the world."

Jeremy P Feakins, OTE Corporation Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said: "We welcome Sheldon to our growing professional team. As we look at multiple OTEC and SDC projects around the world, Sheldon's experience is an excellent fit for us."

New corporate structure
OTE Corporation, with engineering operations in Honolulu, Hawaii, and administrative offices in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, recently acquired OCEES International, Inc., as a wholly owned subsidiary.  OCEES was incorporated in 1998. OTE Corporation is in multiple contract negotiations, including the final phases of executing a contract for power generation in a five-megawatt plant, which would be the world’s first commercial OTEC plant, providing sufficient energy to supply approximately 5,000 homes with electricity. 

Renewable energy – fuel-free and no emissions
Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion is a type of electricity generation whose time has come.  Due to dwindling supplies of oil and the detrimental impact that the burning of fossil fuels has on the environment, the development and employment of alternative energy generation is an immediate necessity. 

Several factors in combination have driven both the US and the wider world to look for reliable base-load electricity. In 1997 the Kyoto Protocol, the first international agreement to address global warming, called for countries to reduce their collective greenhouse gas emissions by 5% from the 1990 level; in the US, several states have adopted renewable energy portfolio standards (RPS) that mandate proportional increases in renewable energy production over the next 25 years.  Under Executive Order 13423, Federal agencies must ensure that at least half of all renewable energy required under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 comes from new renewable sources. OTEC addresses these concerns by converting solar energy stored in the ocean into electricity – with virtually no pollution and less than minimal impact on the environment. Global demand for clean energy is such that the US invested $18.9 billion in 2009 and China invested three times that in an effort to accelerate the replacement of fossil fuels.

The new Hydro power – Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion
OTEC is a process of generating electricity by harnessing the thermal gradient of ocean water.  Cold water from the ocean floor is brought to shore and combined with the warmer ocean water in the upper layer of the sea to boil and condense ammonia at low temperatures and pressures. The resultant ammonia steam drives turbines, thereby producing electricity. 

The technology that OTE Corporation employs was shown to work in the 1990s with a pilot plant on the Big Island of Hawaii, proving that OTEC could produce electricity without the use of fossil fuels. Now land-based OTEC is commercially viable in areas where the thermal gradient temperatures of the ocean and continental shelf are favorable – potentially more than 90 sites worldwide. Several potential contracts are in process in the tropical regions. 

Continuous, limitless energy – with sustainable byproducts
Among the remarkable benefits of an OTEC power plant is that once activated, it runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and uses inexhaustible solar heat stored in the tropical ocean’s surface water for continuous power. This is a major advantage over sources of intermittent power generation, such as wind or solar. 

OTEC has additional important advantages including the production of limitless, clean, fresh drinking water. A 10-megawatt plant could produce millions of gallons of potable water per day from nutrient-rich, pathogen-free ocean water. Cold water from the deep ocean, rivers or lakes can also be used to air-condition – often referred to as seawater district cooling (SDC) and lake source district cooling. OTEC also provides aquaculture opportunities to farm a number of cold-water species of seafood.  Hydrogen can also be produced via electrolysis utilizing the resources of the OTEC plant.

Based on its proprietary power plant designs, OTE Corporation offers a range of innovative products and services, as described above. The Company’s multidisciplinary team of experienced corporate executives, scientists and ocean engineers, together with strong strategic corporate alliances, enable it to provide solutions to address today’s toughest energy, resource and environmental problems. 

Further information:
Ocean Thermal Energy Corporation:
James Greenberg, Director and Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer
+1 717 299 1344

Media inquiries
Allerton Communications:
Peter Curtain 
+44 20 3137 2500 

Pictures of Sheldon Hunt, OTE management and diagrams of the OTEC process are available. Please contact Peter Curtain or email

Notes to Editors
Ocean Thermal Energy Corporation (‘OTE’) is an international renewable energy and resource company using ocean thermal energy conversion (‘OTEC’) to develop land-based power plants for the production of low-cost electricity and potable water. The Company traces its origins to 1998 and the foundation of Ocean Engineering & Energy Systems as an engineering consultancy.

OTEC uses the natural thermal temperature gradient of the sea. Unlike conventional power plants, OTEC systems are non-polluting and inexpensive to operate. As long as the sun heats the oceans, the electricity and potable water produced by OTEC are unlimited and low-cost. 

Based on its power plant designs, OTE plans a broad range of innovative products and services, such as 24/7 clean power and water. The Company’s multidisciplinary team of experienced corporate executives, scientists and ocean engineers, together with strong strategic corporate alliances, enable it to provide solutions to address today’s toughest energy, resource and environmental problems.