IDCORE Curriculum

All courses are weighted at 10 credits (approx. 100 hours of student effort). The majority of courses will be at SCQF level 11 / FHEQ Level 7 as shown below.

Semester 1 (Year 1: September – December)

Introduction to Offshore Renewable Technologies

will provide a synoptic overview of the modules that follow. Leading staff from the IDCORE and guest lecturers will deliver the material. The aim of this course is to give students an understanding of the background to and challenges of large-scale deployment of offshore renewable energy devices. An additional aim of the course is to help integrate the student body and to give an overview of the EngD programme and the topics covered.

Cross-disciplinary Engineering Science Foundations

Each student will be prescribed study to "gap fill", depending upon the qualification and knowledge base that they bring to the IDCORE from their earlier studies. Principally, this is likely to be fundamental material in Engineering Science, Computational and Statistical Methods, and experimental design.

Electromechanical & Electronic Energy Conversion Systems

Aims to give students an excellent working knowledge and understanding of the theory, technology and practice of electrical energy conversion and conditioning in offshore renewable energy converters. Equipping them to gain maximum benefit from direct/indirect exposure to the practice & challenges in electrical generators, power electronics and control during their industrial projects.

Hydrodynamics of Offshore Renewable Energy Devices

Aims to foster knowledge and understanding of the factors influencing the dynamic behaviour of fixed and floating offshore renewable energy devices, and to develop skills in order to predict the dynamic motion and structural response of fixed and floating offshore renewable energy devices.

Marine Renewable Resource Assessment

Explains and discusses the basic physics required in resource modelling and assessment for wind, wave and marine currents (including tidal); provides understanding of user needs for resource assessment and its relation to offshore marine energy production (i.e. calculation of energy yield across all offshore RE technologies); and describes the measurement and data analysis procedures for site resource assessment.

Physical Model Testing for Offshore Renewables

Addresses laboratory-based testing and field trials for assessment of performance and survivability, instrumentation technologies, data acquisition and analysis, analysis of Uncertainty and experiment design, in the context of a highly time- and cost-limited campaigns. The course will include lectures, hands-on demonstrations and mini-projects, taking full advantage of the range of internationally leading facilities available within the consortium.


Semester 2 (Year 1: January – May)

Marine Operations, Condition Monitoring and Reliability

develops an advanced understanding of design and installation requirements in the fields of i) Mooring and Anchor Design, ii) Deployment techniques and iii) Risk and Project Management. Students will gain competence in quasi-static and dynamic mooring analysis, anchoring and mooring methods and the implementation of recognised design codes, and competence with computational design tools that are routinely adopted in industry, for analysis and design tasks.

Economic and Policy Analysis for Offshore Renewables

This course addresses aspects of economic analysis and policy that are cruicial for the offshore renewable sector: energy policy, investment appraisal, levelised costs, portfolio theory, markets and monopoly power, regulation, system-wide economic development and environmental impacts.

Structural Behaviour of Offshore Renewable Energy Devices

Aims to provide knowledge and foster understanding of the factors influencing the structural response of fixed and floating offshore renewable energy devices to external loading, and to develop skills in order to predict ultimate strength of structural components of fixed and floating offshore renewable energy devices.

Electricity Network Interaction, Integration and Control

Aims to give students an excellent working knowledge and understanding of the theory, technology and practice of the network interaction, integration and control of electricity supplied from offshore renewable energy converters. This will equip them to gain maximum benefit from direct/indirect exposure during their industrial projects to the practice & challenges in delivery and control of electrical power flowing from offshore networks to the customer.

Marine Energy System Design Interdisciplinary Group Project

Exposes the students to the challenges and excitement of synthesis of knowledge spanning engineering, environmental science, economics, business and societal areas. The basis of the course is an interdisciplinary a group design exercise, led by an external expert from the private sector. The course will be taught as an intensive two-week block, suiting both the nature of the work and the availability of leading external experts.

Marine Renewables and the Environment

Gives students an understanding of the key oceanographic, biochemical and faunal features of coastal marine systems from an ecological perspective as they impinge on offshore renewable energy developments. Background biology of key habitats and species groups are introduced along with their likely vulnerabilities to interactions (negative or positive) to device construction or operation. The most common survey and data processing techniques are introduced along with practical demonstrations at sea and in the lab. Particular attention will be paid to the differences and difficulties of collecting unbiased data in high energy environments.

Summer Schools (Two weeks in June-August)

Marine Renewables and Society

Broadens students understanding of the competing interests associated with marine real-estate, and how they impact the site selection, progress and compromises enforced on marine renewable energy developments. The latest methods used to balance competing interests (Marine Spatial Planning) are introduced and discussed. The legal processes used to assess environmental impacts are covered to a level where students will understand the relevance and timescales associated with environment consenting processes. Topics include introduction to marine resources; overview of marine users; marine governance, policy, and planning; overview of assessment mechanisms.

Moorings and Reliability

Enables students to understand the wider aspects of Moorings and Reliability and obtain experience at sites and from industry. It will be given over a two weeks and will consist of lectures, presentations from industry, mini workshops and visits to facilities, such as boat trips to South West Mooring Test Facility, Falmouth Bay Test Site, visits to Dynamic Marine Component Test facility.

Open/Distance learning management courses integrated into research phase

Innovation Design and Manufacturing Management

Gives students: an understanding of the entrepreneurial process with its various components; an understanding of the role and importance of entrepreneurship in the modern economy; a knowledge of the operation of commonly used methods for managing design and product information; the ability to critically evaluate entrepreneurial ventures from the point of view of entrepreneurs, investors and government; the ability to analyse manufacturing organisations; understand the complexity of managing supply chains; the ability to go through an entrepreneurial process that culminates in the production of a business plan.

Management of the Project Lifecycle

Gives the students grounding in techniques commonly used to manage large scale projects such as would be involved in the development of offshore renewable energy installations and their operation. By the end of the course the student should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the stages of a project and the principal players within and outwith a project; analyse a project and produce a plan and a schedule of resource requirements, as well as perform limited optimisation studies; appreciate the fundamentals of hazards and risks in the development of projects and how these may be managed; understand how the various parties involved in an engineering project use estimating and budgeting techniques as financial control tools, and understand the contractual aspects between all parties involved.

Regulation in the Offshore Renewable Sector

Exposes the students to the need for and operation of the regulatory processes that govern deployment. It will cover: leasing; consenting; certification; standards; maritime, offshore and onshore operations legislation; EIA; CDM; H&S and site management; network connection codes of practice. The course, delivered by a combination of IDCORE staff and The Crown Estate; DEFRA; Cefas; H&S Executive and National Grid and will make extensive use of case studies.

IDCORE Research Engineering visiting SAMS near Oban, 2013
IDCORE Research Engineering visiting SAMS near Oban, 2013