Ocean energy


Did you know that about one-third of the world’s total reserves of oil and gas lie offshore below the ocean’s surface?

The oceans are also a source of energy because the ocean’s wind, waves, heat, and tides can all be harnessed to drive electricity generators.

These types of renewable energy sources are very important for our sustainable future.

Your challenge is to think like an engineer and design and make a model of an offshore wind turbine.

Have you ever seen an offshore wind farm in the ocean?

There are many in the oceans around northern Europe, and the first offshore wind farm in the southern hemisphere is being built off the Victorian coast.

Wind turbines use large blades which catch the wind. When the wind blows, the blades rotate, driving a generator that makes electricity. The stronger the wind, the more electricity is produced. Offshore wind turbines tend to generate more electricity than onshore turbines because winds on the ocean are usually stronger than those on land.

Check out some images of offshore wind farms here.

What materials might you use? Can you make a model using paper straws, icy pole sticks, long bamboo skewers, recycled milk cartons, aluminium cans, plastic bottles, plastic spoons, paper cups, corks, modelling clay, glue, or sticky tape?


(Copyright: Australian Science Teachers Association 2020, except where indicated otherwise. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial 4.0 International licence.)


Below are plans some of our 5/6 students have come up with:

Below are models some of our 5/6 students made: