futureWind&Marine 2020

futureWind&Marine 2020 Report

On the 5th of March 2020 the Wind & Marine Energy Systems and Structures CDT welcomed 157 delegates to the Technology and Innovation Centre at the University for Strathclyde for our annual seminar. In its 8th edition, fW&M 2020 saw eight final year PhD students present their work across four sessions: Condition Monitoring, Blades, Wakes & Dynamic Structural Loading, and Power Systems & Control.

This year will be remembered as the "year of the fist-bump", as the appropriate precautions were taken to minimise the risk of COVID-19 spread. A big thank you to those who came to support the CDT. 

We were honoured to have so many industry representatives attend the conference and express an interest in our research. The day laid good foundations to make future industry-academia collaborations.

We were very fortunate to have insights from industrial speakers as well as our PhD students. This year, we were pleased to have CDT alumni Simon Gill, now Head of Whole System and Technical Policy at the Scottish Government, to give the keynote speech. This was followed by Rob Cussons from our main sponsor, SSE Renewables, to give the headline presentation on the technology game changers in renewables.

It was brilliant to also have SSE Renewables showcase their leading VR technology. Even if COVID-19 prevented the wearing and sharing of VR headsets, the innovation of the technology was remarkable just the same.

Talks to begin our parallel sessions were delivered by our other event sponsors, ScottishPower Renewables, Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Cubico Sustainable Investments, and an invited talk from the European Marine Energy Centre.

PhD talks from our final year students were as follows: 

Condition Monitoring 

  • Becky Corley: Thermal modelling of wind turbine gearboxes for condition monitoring and fault detection
  • Alan Turnbull: Applications of machine learning in diagnostics and prognostics of wind turbine generators


  • Grant Leishman: An investigation of wind turbine blade erosion due to rain and weathering
  • Gabriele Piesetta: Fatigue loads alleviation by morphing blades for wind and tidal turbines

Wakes and Dynamic Structural Loading

  • George Elderfield: Influence of Low Level Jet wind phenomena on turbine loading and fatigue life in the North Sea
  • Nicola Grieve: Wind turbine control strategies for mitigating tower fatigue loads using wind roses or wake detection

Power Systems and Control

  • Edgar Lucas: Introducing the Partial Frequency Energy Converter: A novel technology to enable low-frequency AC connections for offshore wind
  • Matthew Cole: A comparison of curtailment strategies for reducing lifetime damage equivalent loads across a windfarm

First and Second year students presented posters on their research, with Rebecca Hall winning the best poster prize, sponsored by the Energy Technology Partnership, for her poster entitled “Assessing cumulative displacement of seabirds at offshore windfarm in the North Sea”

The day concluded with a lively and engaging debate panel discussion, sponsored by BVG Associates and chaired by recent CDT graduate Sofia Koukoura. The debate saw Elva Bannon of Wave Energy Scotland, Professor Ian Arbon of Engineered Solutions, Professor Keith Bell of the University of Strathclyde, and Neil Douglas of BVG Associates discuss the future of renewables in a technological and policy context.

We would like to thank all the sponsors for their support without who the event would not have happened:

SSE Renewables - main sponsor

Scottish Power Renewables - secondary sponsor

Cubico Sustainable Investments - secondary sponsor

Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy - secondary sponsor

BVG Associates - debate sponsor

ETP - poster prize sponsor

We look forward to seeing you for our 9th seminar in 2021.

With kind regards,

Mathieu Kervyn (fW&M 2020 chair)


All the posters and presentations from the day can be downloaded by clicking on the appropriate links below:

futureWind&Marine2020 student presentations

futureWind&Marine2020 industry presentations

futureWind&Marine2020 1st year posters

futureWind&Marine2020 2nd year posters

futureWind&Marine2020 other student posters

futureWind&Marine2020 brochure

2020 Sponsors