IES Research Projects

Research Projects at the Institute for Energy Systems (IES). You can search keywords within Project Titles.

We also have many Energy Systems PhD opportunities for postgraduate students looking to join the School.

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Project Title Principal Supervisor Project Summary
Compliant coatings for drag reduction

Dr Ignazio Maria Viola

Compliant coatings can decrease fuel consumption of marine vehicles and enhance energy efficiency of marine energy converters.

A numerical investigation on the effect of different paint coatings on ship resistance in real sailing conditions

Dr Ignazio Maria Viola

In recent years, experimental investigations have been performed on the effect on drag foul release coatings at the University of Newcastle in partnership with International Paint Ltd.

Development and Evaluation of Sustainable Technologies for Flexible Operation of Conventional Power Plants

Dr Hannah Chalmers

The increasing amounts of renewable energy present on the national grid reduce C02 emissions caused by electrical power but they fit into an electrical grid designed for fossil fuels. Fossil fuels can be turned on and off at will and so are very good at matching variations in load. Renewable energy in the form of wind turbines is more variable (although that variability is much more predictable than most people think) and there is a need for existing power plants to operate much more flexibly to accommodate the changing power output from wind, tidal and solar power.

Off-grid Hybrid Energy Systems

Dr Jonathan Shek

This project aims to innovate and improved solutions for the management of power flows in a hybrid electrical power system, to provide a secure, reliable, and high quality supply to varying load demands. The expected research outcome is the design of a robust and fault-tolerant management system, featuring higher efficiency and improved techno-economic performance.

Optimal system sizing through linear programming Testing and analysis of an off-the-shelf hybrid system Novel control system design for optimised performance Lab testing and field testing
The Edinburgh Fluid Dynamics Group

Dr Ignazio Maria Viola

The Edinburgh Fluid Dynamics Group (EFDG) webpage can be found below:  

X-MED: Extreme Loading of Marine Energy Devices due to Waves, Current, Flotsam and Mammal Impact

Dr Tom Bruce

Marine energy should make a substantial contribution to the UK renewable energy target of 30% electricity by 2020. Tidal stream turbines are a more mature technology than wave energy devices while the potential of wave energy is considerable. There is a growing capability and confidence in the loading and performance of marine energy devices in operating conditions as designs rapidly develop. However knowledge of extreme loading is less mature and indeed there is some uncertainty about their origin.

TeraWatt: Large scale interactive coupled 3D modelling for wave and tidal energy resource and environmental impact (Remit 1 MASTS Consortium Proposal)

Dr Vengatesan Venugopal

Scotland has substantial wave and tidal energy resources and is at the forefront of the development of marine renewable technologies and ocean energy exploitation. The next phase will see these wave and tidal devices deployed in arrays, with many sites being developed. Although developers have entered into agreements with The Crown Estate for seabed leases, all projects remain subject to licensing requirements under the Marine Scotland Act (2010).

TIDES: Tidal Demonstration for Energy Scheme

Professor David Ingram

A full tidal array has not been installed anywhere, commercially to date. A number of the leading turbine manufacturers have part or full scale working prototypes which are under-going testing in various sites the majority of which are enclosed in semi-test environments. In order to move this nascent technology into the commercial arena and expedite market deployment, it is necessary to establish an array of turbines in one site to verify the performance capability and environmental characteristics of a full array.

Structural Design of Wave Energy Devices

Professor David Ingram

The Structural Design of Wave Energy Devices project (SDWED) 2010-2014 is an international research alliance supported by the Danish Council for Strategic Research. The project is a five-year endeavour to harness the energy potential in wave energy at competitive costs.

Optimal Design of Very Large Tidal Stream Farms: for Shallow Estuarine Applications

Dr Tom Bruce

This project is a collaboration between SuperGen Marine, the Exeter Centre for Water Resources (Non-SuperGen), Penn State University, Aquascientific Ltd., The Danish Hydraulics Research Institute and is mentored by Garrad Hassan partners. The primary goal is the introduction of a new hybrid optimisation approach that allows the multi-objective optimal design of the layout and power loadings of marine energy farms subject to environmental impacts. It involves a new, academically highly challenging integrated analytic/numerical/experimental, approach to optimising the performance of large tidal stream energy capture farms. The specific application focus involves tidal turbines suited to operating in shallow medium flow estuaries but the technique can be applied to all types of marine energy farms. Optimisation is subject to minimising flood risk, with further environmental impacts, such as sediment transport driven outcomes, being capable of subsequent incorporation as slow timescale effects. The work complements the PERAWAT project and has key partners in common.

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