Assessing Solar Power for Globally Migrating Marine and Submarine Systems

Gregory G. Hahn, Lauren Andrea Adoram-Kershner, Heather P. Cantin, Michael W. Shafer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Remote marine sensing systems, such as autonomous underwater vehicles or telemetry tags, can be limited in data collection and deployment duration due to the finite energy of the onboard battery. With these technologies migrating vast distances over long-term deployments, maintaining high data resolution is difficult and often yields nonideal data sets. Furthermore, electronics systems used in telemetry tags are often potted in epoxy, which makes replacing or recharging the battery impractical. The implementation of solar energy harvesting on these technologies could increase the fidelity of collected data and/or tag longevity. This paper presents an assessment model that estimates the energy output of a stationary or migrating solar cell above or below the ocean's surface. The theory and assumptions behind the model are explained, including a review of established concepts for the purpose of consolidation and variable consistency. The model is then compared to benchmark data for verification. Finally, a preliminary analysis is conducted on the previously collected time, depth, and global location data from a northern elephant seal deployment to demonstrate the resulting model outputs and how they can be used for analysis in future works.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8388246
Pages (from-to)693-706
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • Marine technology
  • predictive models
  • solar energy
  • telemetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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