News

Offshore renewables research boosted by share of £1 million funding

Offshore windfarm

A proposal to develop a cost effective, commercially viable recycling process for wind turbine blades has been awarded a share of £1 million funding from the Supergen Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Hub.

Led by Dr Liu Yang from Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, it is one of two Strathclyde-led projects to receive a boost from the first fuding call of the Hub’s Flexible Fund.

The fund was set up to enable UK researchers to respond to a number of key ORE engineering challenges.

Platform testing

Professor Sandy Day from Naval Architecture, Ocean & Marine Engineering, is the Principal Investigator on a second project to develop a novel approach for the physical model testing of floating wind turbine platforms.

Dr David McMillan from Electronic and Electrical Engineering is also partnering in a project on advanced satellite observations to improve the performance of offshore renewable installations, while Dr Qing Xiao, also from Naval Architecture, Ocean and Marine Engineering, is involved in research for autonomously inspecting offshore wind farms.

Strathclyde is a core member of the consortium, which brings together a network of academic, industrial and policy stakeholders to champion and maintain the UK’s wave, tidal and offshore wind expertise.

The fund aims to support project areas that complement existing research, fill gaps or add cross-cutting activities to explore the transfer of research findings between sectors within ORE.

Research intensity

Professor Feargal Brennan, Head of the Offshore Engineering Institute at Strathclyde and the Supergen ORE Offshore Wind ‘Champion’ said: “Strathclyde is involved in four of the ten projects funded in this competition which is a real demonstration of the research intensity concerned with Offshore Renewable Energy at the University.

“It is particularly encouraging to see the success is spread across the Engineering Faculty involving Mechanical Engineering, Naval Architecture, Offshore & Marine Engineering and Electronic and Electrical Engineering.

“The new Strathclyde projects significantly strengthen the Supergen ORE activity through their multidisciplinary nature and innovative thinking.”

The hub was set up in July 2018 with £5million funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). It was then awarded a further £4million in June 2019.

It provides research leadership to connect stakeholders, inspire innovation and maximise societal value in offshore renewable energy.

It is led by Professor Deborah Greaves OBE, Head of the School of Engineering and Computing, Electronics and Mathematics at the University of Plymouth and includes co-directors from Strathclyde and other universities including Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Manchester and Oxford.

Professor Greaves said: “We are delighted to award this funding aimed at enabling researchers, in collaboration with industry partners, to deliver fundamental research that will advance the development of the offshore renewable energy sector.”

Ross Wigg, Lead Industrial Partner of the Supergen ORE Advisory Board and Renewables Director – Asset Performance at the LOC Group, said: “It has been incredibly exciting to see the level of industry engagement and collaboration across the first Flexible Funding Call applications.

“The successful research projects will be invaluable in tackling some of the key challenges that the offshore renewable industries face both now and in the future.”