Project title: Assessment of next generation offshore wind turbine support structures and installation methodologies
Company/Organisation: EON New Build & Technology
Industrial supervisor: Bob Knight
Academic supervisors: Prof. Atilla Incecik, Dr Vengatesan Venugopal, Dr Lars Johanning
Programme start: January 2012
Industrial Project start: September 2012
I went to university a little later in life than most as it took me a few years of working in the real world to figure out what I wanted to do. I originally studied art, English literature and biology in Bristol at A-level. As this was not the best foundation for a career in engineering, I completed a B-Tec in mechanical and electrical engineering in Bath to enable me to enrol on an undergraduate programme. I went on to get my BEng at Heriot-Watt University (Edinburgh) in mechanical and energy engineering.
What were you doing prior to this programme?
I tried a couple of different career paths before focussing on renewable energy. I had an amazing few years in Southeast Asia teaching scuba diving at a couple of dive shops and later for an NGO, and a very rewarding few years working in “the old game” (plastering) back in the south west of England. During my B-Tec studies I worked for a building services engineering consultancy in Bath, which gave me a flavour of the variety of possibilities that a career in engineering could offer.
What attracted you to studying with IDCORE?
I heard about the IDCORE programme whilst working for the ETI on a summer placement. The project I was working on investigated the state of technology development in the wave and tidal renewable energy sectors. These were a big influence on my decision to study engineering in the first place. The IDCORE programme sounded tailor-made for my interests, both in the breadth of expertise covered in the taught modules, and in the mix of academic and industrial experience.
What attracted you to offshore renewables industry?/ What aspects of the industry do you find most inspiring, interesting or important for the future?
Even with offshore wind, the industry is still relatively young with a lot of interesting challenges to overcome, not just with the engineering! There are other aspects too, such as global warming, energy security, manufacturing jobs, etc.
Main responsibilities and challenges as a Research Engineer
I manage my own research project, and engage with other aspects of related work within the company. I am currently involved with a couple of joint industry projects, which give me an insight into the wider industry,
What is your biggest achievement to date?
Catching a fly in mid-air with chop sticks.