The Institute for Energy Systems at the University of Edinburgh has been at the forefront of marine energy research for around 40 years and enjoys a worldwide reputation and engagement in collaborative marine energy, electrical machines and power systems research. It has pioneered, developed, and spun-out many enabling technologies ranging from force-feedback wave makers, through high pressure digitally controlled power transmission systems, to radically reconfigured direct-drive slow speed generators.
Edinburgh Designs Ltd is recognised as the world’s leading supplier of precision wave generation systems. Artemis Intelligent Power Ltd won the Carbon Trust's 2009 Innovator of the Year award for low-carbon technology and were recently bought by Mitsubishi in a £100m investment in a renewable energy R&D base in Scotland; NGenTec Ltd have secured £3m investment and partnered with David Brown Gears to manufacture, test and assemble the first 1 MW prototype of the C-GEN direct drive generator. Pelamis began its life in the curved tank at Edinburgh. Edinburgh graduates and research staff have contributed a steady stream of new talent into national and international companies establishing the marine energy sector in the UK and other countries. Academic and research staff from the IES collaborate in prestigious international relationships with partners in the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Taiwan, China, Norway and France – ranging from: working with Governments, National Funding Councils and Agencies; to constructing and agreeing R&D Roadmaps, Test Protocols; through collaborative research, test programmes in national labs; to staff and student exchange. Edinburgh now leads the European Energy Research Alliance (Marine).
The University of Strathclyde has had more than 125 years involvement in the marine and offshore industries. Its marine research groups are now co-ordinated through its Strathclyde Marine Institute (SMI). Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering (NA-ME) researchers have extensive international experience in offshore engineering and marine energy, specifically in marine hydrodynamics, including loading, response and survivability of offshore structures, motions of floating systems, dynamics of slender structures (including moorings), experimental methods, structural response and reliability, and design for safety. Staff contribute to international standard-setting in Offshore Engineering via International Towing Tank Conference (ITTC), International Ship Structures Congress (ISSC), HSE, and Classification Societies (e.g.DnV and Lloyds register). Strathclyde has developed and evaluated CoRMaT, a novel contra-rotating flexible-mooring-supported marine turbine, and recently spun out the company Nautricity to develop the technology commercially. Commercial devices tested at the University's Kelvin Hydrodynamics Laboratory include Pelamis, Oyster, Anaconda, AWS, (wave) and Lunar Energy and Scotrenewables tidal devices.Institute of Energy and Environment (InstEE) at Strathclyde is the largest UK R&D group in electrical power systems, distributed generation, and wind energy. InstEE’s internationally-recognised leadership in these areas is reflected in its membership of the European Wind Energy Academy and the European Energy Research Alliance Wind Energy Collaboration, their partnership with all 10 leading wind energy research institutes in Europe and, along with MIT, Riso and NREL, their associate partnership of the Norwegian Research Centre for Offshore Wind Technology. InstEE hosts the CDT in Wind Energy Systems.
The University of Exeter has been involved with marine dynamics and renewable energy for some 20 years and has recently greatly expanded its capabilities as a partner in the SWRDA/ERDF funded PRIMaRE consortium. Exeter is internationally recognised for its research that supports marine operations and maintenance, specifically in wave analysis, resources assessment and modelling; moorings and installations and reliability engineering and testing and also control. The University collaborates with the Wave Hub, and has strong links with supply chain development in the South West and with device developers including OPT and Fred Olsen and has international collaboration across Europe, the US, Mexico and Israel. It has developed several internationally unique research facilities aimed at near to full-scale testing of marine renewable and has performed “base-line” environmental surveys around the Wave Hub site.
The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) is one of the UK's leading marine science research organisations, and one of the World’s oldest oceanographic institutions. SAMS currently employs around 140 staff and is committed to increasing knowledge and stewardship of the marine environment through research, education, maintenance of research infrastructure, and knowledge transfer. It is a NERC collaborative centre and an academic partner of the University of the Highlands and Islands. Their work is supported by NERC, Scottish Government, Scottish Natural Heritage, HIE, SFC, ERDF, EC (FP7 Equimar), OpenHydro, Scottish Power Renewables, Voith Hydro and EMEC.
HR Wallingford (HRW) is an independent company that has offered applied research and specialist consultancy services for 60 years to clients worldwide in civil engineering hydraulics and the water environment. It is the UK national centre for civil engineering hydraulics, with considerable experience in marine aspects of renewable energy extraction. HRW is fundamentally involved in design of turbine tower foundations for offshore wind farms, for predicting installation operability under varying wave climates, for modelling of currents and tidal flows associated with tidal generators and on the design of tidal barrages.