An aerial view of the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kaua‘i's Westside.

An aerial view of the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kaua‘i’s Westside.

The University of Hawai‘i announced this week the Office of Naval Research contracted with the Applied Research Laboratory at UH for a $2.5 million energy research project at three naval bases in Hawai‘i, including the Pacific Missile Rage Facility on Kaua‘i’s Westside.

The research will be conducted by the Hawai‘i Natural Energy Institute’s Grid System Technologies Advanced Research Team, an HNEI research team focused on the integration and analysis of energy technologies and power systems, including smart grid and micro grid applications.

“This research continues to build on the growing relationship between the ARL/UH, HNEI and the Navy to help the Navy improve its knowledge and understanding of its shore energy demands while leveraging the great opportunity in alternative energy,” said Retired Vice Adm. and ARL/UH Executive Director Michael Vitale.

The objective of the research is to develop a power grid modernization strategy and action plan to meet the future needs of the Navy in Hawai‘i, with a special focus on the reliability and power quality demands of electrical service to the shipyard.

As part of this task, a renewable energy integration action sub-plan will be developed to help the Navy — the largest single electricity user in the state — meet its renewable energy goals in a manner that maintains electrical service reliability and stability, ensuring continuity of mission critical activities.

Besides Kaua‘i’s PMRF, the first phase of this effort will gather baseline information about current electrical systems at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and at the Marine Corps Base Hawai‘i.

Subsequent tasks will focus on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and will include developing plans to improve emergency power systems, demand-side management systems, and hydrogen fuel cell usage, as well as grid modernization with renewable energy systems.

The ARL/UH was established in 2008 as one of five Navy University Affiliated Research Centers. Visut for more information.

HNEI is an organized research unit of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology at UH Mānoa. Visit for more information.

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