University of Nantes

Marine renewable energy at Université de Nantes.

Université de Nantes is a key player in the development of marine renewable energy in France with its 12 laboratories, 16 diploma courses and 120 researchers involved. It is home to the Institut Universitaire Mer et Littoral, a research institute specialising in cross-disciplinary coastal and maritime research (40 years of expertise) and active in the regional COSELMAR project which featured a section on offshore wind power (bio-colonisation). The institute was thus in charge of organising the French contribution to the French American Innovation Days conference in Boston in March 2019 which focused on floating wind. It is also the main contributor to the research undertaken by the West Atlantic Marine Energy Community (WEAMEC).

Supporting business through research in marine renewables

Of the 120 researchers (full time equivalent), 80% conduct technological research and the remaining 20% conduct non-technological research. Most of the research teams have achieved A+ or A by the national evaluation body for research and higher education AERES. In 2018, the teams were estimated to produce 30 publications in reviews, over 50 papers at conferences and 4 patents including one for a bio-colonisation measuring station. These laboratories have been involved in offshore wind project calls by France’s national environment and energy agency ADEME, in several European and national project calls across the following areas:

  • Electrotechnics and power generation
  • Logistics
  • Subsea concrete
  • Blades and composites
  • Foundations and foundation structures
  • Wind turbine maintenance

A range of ongoing projects

The laboratories are currently working on more than 20 thematic projects financed by national research funds, industry and local government. They are partners or coordinators in various projects financed by France Energies Marines, and in collaborative projects where their expertise and knowledge are put to good use by highly committed manufacturers.
The university is currently involved in 5 projects financed by France Energies Marines including the ABIOP+ project about biofouling in conjunction with Naval Group, RTE, Corrodys and EDF. Local businesses are also key partners such as Les Chantiers de l’Atlantique.

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