RALEIGH, N.C. November 6, 2020 – W3 Engineering, a coastal and environmental engineering firm with expertise in environmental planning, engineering, coastal management, and unmanned aircraft systems has been chosen by the North Carolina Technology Association as a finalist for the NC TECH Awards, North Carolina’s statewide technology awards program. This awards program recognizes companies, organizations and individuals for their achievement, innovation and leadership throughout the year.
After a nomination period earlier this year, finalists and winners were chosen in a two-stage review process by an independent selection committee led by the accounting firm Cherry Bekaert. The awards process culminates with the NC TECH Virtual Awards at three broadcasts beginning at 4pm each day on November 17, 18 and 19. Winners will be announced during the broadcasts.
W3 Engineering’s work includes Atlantic Reefmaker, an innovative living shoreline wave attenuation system, that helps mitigate coastal erosion. The concept is a water flow-through wave attenuation technology that dissipates wave energy in three ways: (1) wave energy reflects back into open water from the front face of the structure; (2) wave energy collisions occur along the sides of the octagonal structure; and, (3) water energy dissipates as it’s directed through the system.
While wave attenuation is the primary function of the Reefmaker concept, there are many additional environmental benefits to the system. The system stabilizes the shoreline and marsh while enhancing the fish and shellfish habitat on and around the structure for marine fauna, and sessile and non-sessile organisms.
The Atlantic Reefmaker is comprised of six individual concrete disks stacked on a 12” diameter composite fiberglass pile that are embedded with natural oyster shell and soaked in oyster spat before installation to promote oyster settlement. The Reefmaker concept and structure redefines “living shorelines.” Oysters are known as the vacuum cleaners of the ocean and provide a critical function by acting as huge filtration systems to clean our oceans by removing organic and inorganic particles from the water column resulting in cleaner water which positively impacts other species. The presence of oyster shells also creates a hard-bottom substrate that provides habitat for other organisms. Many organisms depend on the existence of the shell to grow. Barnacles, mussels, and anemones all require a hard bottom on which to attach and grow. Oyster reefs also provide shelter and spawning areas for the residents.
“We have another great class of finalists this year from across the state, so we expect an exciting virtual celebration of North Carolina’s vibrant and growing tech sector,” said Brooks Raiford, President and CEO of NC TECH.
“We are honored to be among the finalists chosen along with many other innovative technologies, all helping to improve our environment and ecological ecosystem,” said Randy Boyd, principal, W3 Engineering.
“During these uncertain times, innovation and achievement in technology is more important than ever. At Cherry Bekaert, we are honored to join NC TECH to recognize the very best in tech. We are consistently impressed by the emerging development and leadership in the technology sector and look forward to celebrating the positive impact these companies have on the state of North Carolina,” said Ron Wainwright, CPA – Partner & National Leader, Credits & Accounting Methods.
Individual award winners will be announced later this month. More information on the NC TECH Awards can be found at the NC TECH Awards event page.
About NC TECH
The North Carolina Technology Association (NC TECH) is a not-for-profit, membership-driven trade association and the primary voice of the technology industry in North Carolina. NC TECH’s mission is to foster growth and champion innovation in North Carolina’s tech sector, while providing a voice for the tech community through professional networks, government affairs, talent development and sector promotion. For more information, visit our website at www.nctech.org.