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JULY 2018

This month's dispatch from the leading edge of offshore wind,wave and tidal innovation - delivered straight to your inbox.


 Government announces five-year funding package for ORE Catapult

Aerial of ORE Catapult testing facilities

The Catapult's National Renewable Energy Centre in Blyth.

The Government has announced a continued five-year funding package to support the Catapult's offshore wind, wave and tidal energy innovation and technology development activities. 


On a visit to the north-east last week, Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark confirmed that the Catapult will benefit from a cash injection that will help hundreds more companies bring their promising products to market – boosting the UK's burgeoning offshore renewable energy supply chain. The Centre for Process Innovation, part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, also received a five-year funding commitment.


"The Catapult network plays a key role in building on UK strengths in sectors and technologies that are going to be in high demand in the years ahead, bringing ideas to products and services on the market," said Mr Clark. "[This] investment builds on the unique strengths the North East has in renewable energy and advanced manufacturing, helping drive the region’s future economic growth."


Test & Validation Director Tony Quinn welcomed the funding as a "significant investment in the future of" the Catapult. "Over the next five years, we hope to attract significant match funding from industry to deliver our vision to support 1400 businesses, create 16000 new jobs and contribute more than £900m to the UK economy," he said.


Read the full story at GOV.UK


 Changing of the Board: Catapult welcomes two new Directors 

Huub den Rooijen annual report 2013 _1_

 New ORE Catapult Board member Huub den Rooijen.


Two new members have been appointed to the Catapult’s Board of Directors.


The Crown Estate’s Director of Energy, Minerals and Infrastructure, Huub den Rooijen, joined the Board as a Non-Executive Director on 1st July. Ronnie Bonnar, the former Repsol Nuevas Energias UK General Manager, will join from 1st January 2019.


“Huub brings extensive experience across all areas of the energy market,” said Colin Hood, the Catapult’s Chairman. “He will bring invaluable insight to the Board as we strive to deliver ambitious plans to seize the UK’s huge opportunity from offshore wind, wave and tidal energy.


“Ronnie’s leadership within the broader renewable energy sector will also bring considerable benefit,” said Mr Hood. Following a six-month period for continuity, Andrew Mill and Alan Moore will leave the Catapult’s Board in December 2018 and July 2019 respectively. The Catapult wishes to thank Mr Mill and Mr Moore for their invaluable service and considerable contributions during their time on the Board.

Read the full story on our website


Catapult collaboration sparks electrical infrastructure R&D 

ORE March 2018 -20
The Catapult's HV Electrical Laboratory.


Two of the UK's electrical engineering research powerhouses have joined forces with Catapult to form the £3.1m Electrical Infrastructure Research Hub.

The Universities of Strathclyde and Manchester will help tackle the challenge of making the UK's electrical infrastructure systems future-proof. With a five-year investment of around £700k from the Catapult, and £2.4m  match funding from its partners, the Hub will address research topics including: 

  • component reliability and availability
  • system and sub-system optimisation
  • future smart energy systems and storage.

"I’m delighted that the Universities of Strathclyde and Manchester will have the opportunity to build on our established expertise," said Keith Bell, Professor of Smart Grids at the University of Strathclyde, "and work with the Catapult and wider industry to come up with new solutions to problems.”

Read the full story on our website

Perry impressive: Energy Minister scales IHR turbine

Claire Perry IHR

Claire Perry inspects the Immersive Hybrid Reality Offshore Wind Turbine.


Despite being more accustomed to working at the highest reaches of Government, Energy and Clean Growth Minister Claire Perry experienced life at the top of an offshore wind turbine during a visit to the Great Exhibition of the North in Newcastle last week.


The Minister was in the north-east to announce a major support package for UK industry to power millions more homes and businesses over the next decade, and joined UK Arts Minister Michael Ellis MP and Scottish Minister for Further Education Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP in having scaled the virtual turbine.


The Immersive Hybrid Reality Offshore Wind Turbine is part of the Exhibition's Innovation Trail, and is free to access at The Core, at Newcastle Helix, until 9th September 2018. 

Find out more about the IHR Turbine

 WEBS report sets new wind industry benchmark

Screen Shot 2018-07-31 at 12.36.03

WEBS provides anonymous benchmarking against 120 wind farm metrics.


The first Wind Energy Benchmarking Services report has been published.

Based on detailed, anonymised metrics from European wind farms, the free report includes quarterly indices on production, availability and reliability.

The report also features a deep dive into scheduled maintenance trends, revealing how wind turbine annual service has evolved over the last decade – essential reading for any wind industry professional.

WEBS was formed in April 2016 and is now a joint venture between ORE Catapult and Natural Power. It provides unique, secure, anonymised and independent web-based benchmarking for wind farms, using consistent KPIs to help strengthen operational strategy, improve performance, reduce costs and manage risks.

Download your copy of the WEBS Summer 2018 report

 Game-changing AUV could cut costs and create jobs in offshore wind



Rovco's technology could cut offshore wind inspection costs by 80%.


Bristol-based Rovco is the latest to feature in our Backing the Game Changers series, which profiles companies developing cutting-edge solutions in offshore wind, wave and tidal energy.

Rovco’s advanced underwater 3D computer-vision delivers fully scaled, true to life, three dimensional graphical models of subsea turbines, allowing operators to remotely inspect wind farms based far offshore. The system, which is being tested at the Catapult's National Renewable Energy Centre, has the potential to slash the cost of subsea inspections by 80%.

Watch the Rovco Game Changers video


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