SURVEYOR'S NOTEBOOK

Is It Possible to Argue about Taste?

  A long time ago I enjoyed a Car Talk episode where a listener asked Click and Clack what car he should buy for a cross country road trip. Click and Clack right away started making suggestions about late 1960’s or early 1970’s great American cruisers. Their argument was simple. Those cars are not expensive,… Read more »

Replacing Fossil Fuels with Ocean Wave Power

Wave energy converter (WEC) systems have not yet made it to the stage of development of wind and solar systems, but most ocean wave energy is a concentrated form of wind energy covering over 70% of the Earth and presents a fascinating opportunity for the future of sustainable energy systems. Martin & Ottaway is developing… Read more »

How Can We Stabilize the Power Industry in the United States?

Daily power plant operations in the United States are often taken for granted. Most people are not aware that the wholesale/industrial rate for electricty is updated every fifteen minutes and frequently varies from highs near $0.30/kWh ($300/MWh) to lows near $0.03/kWh ($30/MWH) throughout the day. Regional transmission operators (RTOs), companies such as PJM in the… Read more »

Grace in the Details Kills Bike Helmets

Design is complicated, but often we try to explain it in a quick catchy phrase. There is a saying: “The Devil is in the Details”. Mies van der Rohe is often credited with flipping the concept upside down by saying: “God is in the Details”. Regardless, it means that if you do not pay attention… Read more »

So What Does It Mean to have a 1000MW Wave Farm Offshore?

Scale is a difficult concept when novel technologies are being introduced, especially when it comes to marine renewable energy projects. Let’s assume we are talking about a 1000 Megawatt wave farm. It is quite interesting to visualize such a farm off the coast of New Jersey (see Figure 1). Figure 1. A visualized 1000MW plate… Read more »

Sergio Marchionne, An Appreciation of a Leader

I have always had an odd fascination with Chrysler. The whole story is too long to get into, but it relates to my Mother first seeing value in Chrysler stock and timing the ups and downs like Paganini on a violin, and my days at Chrysler’s Highland Parks Tech Center working with Chrysler engineers on… Read more »

Happy Anniversary IMO, a Sterling Example of International Cooperation

I joined the industry in 1981 and, before that, remember playing with the tarballs on the Dutch Northsea beaches. Things don’t always get better, but as far as international shipping is concerned, boy, have things improved. A huge portion of the credit goes to all the hardworking mariners who notice things that are wrong, and then come together… Read more »

Hydrogen As The Ultimate Fuel, Part 2

We discussed hydrogen generation techniques in our 2014 guest blog by Matt Stern. Since that time, the world has continued its fascination with this element, and recent developments show some interesting progress. Our present intern Karley Hildin provides an update: One really interesting example is a project taking place in Orkney, an island chain in the… Read more »

MICA Golf Outing 2018

Congratulations to the winner of the “Closest to the line”, Molly McCafferty of Guardian Navigation with Mike Crowley of Thomas Miller. Follow us on LinkedIn by clicking the “Follow” button on our blog page.