The untapped potential in offshore renewable energy is vast, but there are still some big challenges to overcome before we can harness it. Funded by the British government and UKRI, with a history of ten years, the SuperGen partnerships have seen research institutions come together to identify these challenges, providing a range of accessible research to inspire innovation.
The University of Hull and Aura is part of the Supergen Offshore Renewable Energy Hub which brings together 10 universities from across the UK to provide research leadership in the sector.
SuperGen ORE Hub have identified a range of technical, environmental and socioeconomic challenges that will be a major focus of their work over the coming years, all areas aim to connect stakeholders, inspire innovation and maximise the societal value of offshore renewable energy research.
Developing new methods, ideas and products, the project aims to overcome engineering and scientific challenges around offshore renewable energy systems, but also help improve equality and diversity in the offshore wind workforce.
Research based at the University of Hull is investigating how a range of sensors can be used to monitor and control the extreme loads which offshore wind turbines are subjected to from both wind and waves. This is intended to better manage fatigue in these structures and minimise the need for unplanned maintenance.
In addition to this technical research, the University of Hull, is leading research to understand how to improve equality in both STEM research teams and the offshore wind sector as a whole. We are looking to increase female employment in the offshore wind, contributing to Government aims of boosting the proportion of women in the workforce to a third by 2030. An EDI (equality diversity and inclusion) SuperGen report has been commissioned to assess the current status of equality, diversity and inclusion, identifying potential barriers and offering potential solutions.
As an ongoing project, SuperGen is continually looking to develop and innovate within the offshore wind sector. The research we are conducting is crucial to increasing the sustainable deployment of offshore renewable energy system in the UK and around the world.
Nurturing a new generation of academic researchers in a culture where equality, diversity and inclusion are second nature
It has been projected that the STEM sector will require 500,000 advanced technicians and engineers by 2022: a requirement which cannot be met by current levels of education and training. This shortfall is exacerbated by the ‘leaky pipeline’ where underrepresented groups, such as women, do not progress through key transitions in education and careers, The SuperGen ORE EDI report has already identified key skills gaps in the offshore renewables sector and offers potential solutions that have formed the basis of an action plan for the sector.