Green energy companies are using Lake Erie to test wave conversion devices this summer.

The California company plans to test a prototype device on Harbor Creek Beach, but town officials hope this is just a prelude to future economic development here.

California has plenty of its own waves, but a Golden State company chose an Erie County beach to test its wave conversion technology.

Breakwave Energy plans to install a prototype at Shorewood Beach in Harborcreek Township to collect data starting next month.

The company's founder said he is working with students at Penn State Behrend's Innovation Lab. The prototype is 30 feet long and can be quickly retreated to the beach.

“The only thing that touches the lake is a modified boogie board,” said William Lyman, founder of Breakwave Energy.

Lyman said the equipment will be monitored and used during times of low beach traffic.

“You really have to go out of your way early in the morning, on weekdays, late in the afternoon to see the equipment,” Lyman said.

Harborcreek Township Supervisor Steve Ohler said there are many benefits to being located on Lake Erie.

“It's cheaper here than in California. Another reason is that our lakes have about the same type of waves and we get a response back to see if it works, and we don't have salt water. So it's very easy on the equipment,” Oehler said.

The wave monitoring equipment will only be installed during the summer, but town officials hope green energy companies will see the benefits of permanently installing it here.

“We're always looking for new jobs, new growth in our region, and if this project ends up being built by people right here in Erie, Pennsylvania, we're very excited,” Ohler said. Ta.

The Breakwave Energy project crowdfund was established with a minimum investment of $100. Learn more about.

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