National Subsea Research Initiative (NSRI) has identified potential enablers which will assist subsea supply chain companies to break into the wave and tidal energy sectors.
The findings, part of NSRI’s online Matchmaker database, reveal how UK firms can link up with technology researchers and developers to adapt their offerings and take advantage of the immediate diversification opportunities in marine renewables.
Matchmaker aims to connect organisations already active in the wave and tidal energy to collaborate, solve industrial challenges and progress research and development activity, NSRI said.
Split into five themes: operations and maintenance; subsea structures; installation; systems; health and safety; and environmental impact, companies can quickly identify how they can support the wave and tidal sectors by selecting their specialisms.
Gordon Drummond, Project Director of NSRI said: “The wave and tidal sectors are less mature in their contribution to energy production, as a result they are currently more expensive than traditional generating resources. With help from the subsea supply chain and advances in technology, both sectors have the potential to extract sustainable energy from the ocean at a low cost.
“This presents a huge opportunity for subsea supply chain companies to adapt their technologies and techniques to support the development of large-scale wave and tidal power farms. To help them do this, we have mapped out the technical challenges with support from industry experts to pinpoint areas where their capabilities can add significant value.
Maria Farid, Project Engineer of NSRI added: “There’s no denying marine renewables has struggled to make its mark and this is partly down to the engineering challenges of operating at sea, including the mechanical stresses of the ocean and the corrosive effects of salt water.
“These are obstacles that the UK subsea industry has successfully overcome. We hope Matchmaker will clearly highlight exactly how subsea companies can play their part, diversify their offering and make the connections required to break into the wave and tidal market.”
NSRI will host a joint industry event in Aberdeen early next year, giving stakeholders across the sector the opportunity to discuss the challenges and possible solutions, matching industry needs with academic capabilities and supply chain offerings.