Dan Hellin
Assistant Director (Test Operations)
350 Batcheller Hall | Oregon State University | Corvallis, OR 97331
P: 541-737-5452 | E: dan.hellin@oregonstate.edu





NNMREC is one of three US Department of Energy-funded centers charged with facilitating the development of marine renewable energy technology via research, education, and outreach.

Established in 2008, NNMREC is currently a partnership between Oregon State University, the University of Washington and the University of Alaska Fairbanks.


Our mission is to support the responsible development of marine and offshore wind energy in the Northwest by:

  • Investigating technical, environmental, and social dimensions of these ocean energy technologies, and carrying out research that fills knowledge gaps;
  • Engaging with communities and stakeholder groups to ensure their participation in ocean energy-related decisions in which they have an interest; and
  • Assisting developers with testing, business planning, and permitting phases.

Our three-pronged approach, using research, education, and outreach to accomplish this mission, has resulted in major advances in our understanding of the technologies in question and their potential impacts on the environment. 


Our objectives are to:

  • Develop facilities to serve as an integrated, standardized test center for US and international developers of wave and wind energy;
  • Evaluate potential environmental, ecosystem, and human dimension impacts of wave and offshore wind energy installations, focusing on the compatibility of marine energy technologies in areas with sensitive environments and existing users;
  • Facilitate and conduct research to inform adaptive management of marine energy technologies;
  • Study and consult on device and array optimization for effective deployment of wave and wind energy technologies;
  • Improve forecasting of the wave energy resource; and
  • Increase reliability and survivability of marine energy systems.


As Assistant Director, I oversee all operational aspects of testing and research at both the Pacific Marine Energy Center's North Energy Test Site (NETS) and the South Energy Test Site (SETS) and our associated shoreside facilities.  I ensure that all device testing, research and monitoring is implemented smoothly, efficiently and safely while remaining compliance with federal and state regulations and requirements, and meeting agreed client objectives; serve as primary NNMREC point of contact for the federal and state regulatory and licensing agencies; respond to federal and state inquiries about environmental compliance at NNMREC's ocean test facilities; ensure that NNMREC Principle Investigators comply with requirements of adaptive management procedures at ocean test facilities; ensure that developers testing at NNMREC facilities are informed of, and adhere to adaptive management requirements; assist developers with permitting processes; represent NNMREC in regulatory meetings with federal and state agencies; represent NNMREC in community outreach and engagement activities to a wide range of local, national and international stakeholders; and fill-in for the NNMREC Director when needed..

During the permitting and planning phase of PMEC SETS, I am working closely with the lead on our consulting team to ensure the licensing and permitting for the site. I am working closely with state and federal agencies to ensure the regulatory process stays on track and collaborate on, and assist with the design for the test site, terrestrial cable landing site and infrastructure, and associated support buildings.


I have over 20 years of experience in coastal and ocean management and have been involved in numerous multi-disciplinary research projects focused on a wide range of issues including: offshore renewable energy; marine spatial planning; port and harbor management; regulatory and policy analysis and development; economic analysis; waterfront planning; GIS analysis and mapping; marine industry analysis; assessments of marine facilities; and studies of recreational boating and fishing.

From June 2013 to December 2014, I served as NNMREC’s Environmental Compliance Manager.

Prior to joining NNMREC, I founded Dan Hellin Consulting LLC, a coastal and ocean management consulting company based in Corvallis, OR.

From 2001 to 2011, I was a research associate at the Urban Harbors Institute, a coastal and ocean research and policy institute at the University of Massachusetts Boston.  During this time, I served as a project manager on a wide range of projects.  My responsibilities included developing grant proposals and scopes of work; designing and implemented studies; supervising and coordinating work with federal, state and municipal agencies, private industry, academics and students; facilitating public meetings and workshops; conducting interviews; gathering and analyzing data including geospatial data; designing and producing multiple reports and publications; and producing websites and publicity materials for the institute and for clients.

In addition, I have conducted environmental impact assessments and ecological studies in the US and, internationally, in Bermuda and Malaysia.  This work addressed issues such as recreational pelagic fishing; the effectiveness of no-take zones within marine protected areas; the recovery of coral reefs after ship grounding events; the ecological effects of sewage on coral reefs; the effects of thermal effluent on seagrass beds; and the impacts of tourism and coastal development on coral reefs.

Resume (350kb PDF)

Updated: December 10, 2014