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Marine Energy

With some of the best and most exploitable marine renewable energy available, Scotland already has full-scale prototype wave and tidal energy generators at sea, connected and delivering energy to the UK. ETP is forging links between Scotland’s world leading universities and the marine energy industry to help wave and tidal energy contribute to a diverse and secure energy mix in the future.

 
ETP expertise in marine energy
Resource Assessment

One of the key areas of expertise in ETP is in assessment of renewable energy resources including wave and tidal alongside others like wind and hydropower. Such analysis is vitally important for project feasibility studies, planning policy, wider energy network analysis as well as specification of marine energy devices.

Resource Modelling 

Modelling plays a major part in the resource assessment process, whether this be at geographical level or more detailed individual sites. ETP universities are well placed to conduct numerical and statistical evaluations of both wave and tidal energy sites.

Tank Testing

The University of Edinburgh has built a reputation for tank testing over 40 years. The latest tank at FloWave is capable of simulating both currents and waves. Its scale and capability makes this an unparalleled world class facility. Another of the ETP Universities - The University of Strathclyde offers the Kelvin Hydrodynamics Laboratory for large scale tests.

CFD modeling

Throughout the ETP university partners, computational fluid dynamics remains an invaluable tool to understand the fluid-structure interactions of marine energy devices and the water. The Universities of Strathclyde and Edinburgh use a combination of bespoke and commercial software packages to conduct computationally intensive modeling.  Edinburgh can also provide access to supercomputer HECTOR.

Economic modelling and assessment 

The economics of projects have been examined by a number of projects and institutes within ETP . The Fraser of Allander Institute at the University of Strathclyde carries out research on the regional and Scottish economy with a particular interest in energy issues.

Machine design

At Edinburgh’s Institute for Energy Systems much research activity relates to the ability to extract power from the sea. In particular this includes novel direct drive linear and rotary electrical generators and considerable work into the effective and efficient control of marine energy devices.

Environmental Impact modelling

Both the University of the Highlands and Islands (SAMS and ERI at Thurso) and Heriot-Watt’s ICIT campus are active in modeling the Environmental impact of marine energy of the flora and fauna found in the sea.

Marine Energy - Case Study

Maritime Craft Services: MCS is a marine vessel owner/operator based on the Clyde. The company has significant experience in the operation of offshore energy support vessels and is in the process of procuring a SWATH vessel for this purpose. The SWATH (Small Water Plane Area Twin Hull) is designed to perform well in rough sea conditions, for example enabling wind turbine access in greater wave heights than other vessels. The ETP provided funding for a team of academics from the University of Strathclyde (Naval Architecture, Ocean and Marine Engineering department, NAOME) to carry out a study of the new MCS vessel, analysing its performance in expected sea conditions and assessing the relative benefits of the vessel type over other MCS craft. This work allows MCS to gain confidence in the operation capabilities of the new vessel and plan future marine energy market positioning. In turn, NAOME has continued to build its modelling capability, including the use of the NEWDRIFT software for seakeeping and wave induced loads analysis of ships and arbitrarily shaped floating structures.

If you would like to find out more about what ETP can do for companies in the Marine Energy field contact marine@etp-scotland.ac.uk.

Scottish Energy Laboratory (SEL) - Marine facilities

In partnership with ETP, energy sector test facilities have been brought together under the Scottish Energy Laboratory (SEL) umbrella. Facilities of particular relevance to the marine sector include:
 

  • University of Aberdeen OceanLab sea testing facility
  • University of Edinburgh curved wave tank and wave flumes
  • University of Edinburgh machine and power electronics test laboratory
  • FloWave TT (University of Edinburgh) All Waters Combined Current and Wave Test Facility.
  • Heriot-Watt University wave basin
  • University of Strathclyde Kelvin Hydrodynamics Laboratory
  • Energy Technology Centre - component test facilities
  • European Marine Energy Centre. World leading, grid connected test facility in the waters around Orkney
     

For more details visit: www.scottishenergylaboratory.com