We are pleased to announce that the 5th REMS Annual Event will be held over three virtual sessions on 21 April, 28 April and 5 May 2021. The event agenda includes speakers from industry, academia, REMS students and REMS alumni. See below for further details or click on the event date you are interested in to register.

21 April 9:00-11:00 Challenges of Monopile Design and Application

28 April 9:00-11:00 Structural Integrity Challenges in Offshore Wind Industry

5 May 9:00-11:00 Offshore Wind Technology Development and Optimization

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We are pleased to announce that the 4th REMS Annual Conference will take place on 23rd May, 2019 at Strathclyde University, Technology and Innovation Centre, Glasgow. The conference agenda includes presentations from industrial partners and REMS students. For more information please contact or register.

The Annual REMS Christmas Dinner was held on the 5th December and was attended by 25 students from across all years. It was a great opportunity for the new REMS 2021 students to get to know their colleagues and to chat to staff in an informal setting. A good time was had by all.

On the 18th to 19th of September 2017 Cranfield University hosted the REMS-CDT third annual conference. With speakers and attendees from industry and academia, the conference gave an opportunity for both sides to discuss their innovations and future direction. This highlights the close working practice that REMS has with industry and one of the ways in which it ensures that all work has an industry importance.

The first day was focused on student presentations where each student had the opportunity to summarize their research. The REMS centre has grown significantly since its inception three years ago and so there were 26 student presentations in the first day, starting with the third cohort and finishing with the first.

The second day hosted a mix of industry and academic presentations, too many to list in this article. While the previous year’s presentations centred around monopiles, this year saw a new focus on the potential for floating offshore structures in the first session and included speakers from Atkins, Carbon Trust and ORE Catapult. The second session discussed operational management including the use of inspection drones, data analysis from Strainstall, the influence of floating structure motion on workers and other interesting topics. The third session covered relifing and repowering, including structural integrity assessment, measurement techniques from RAL-STFC as well as flange design from LIC Energy.

The second day concluded with an expert panel Q&A session which led to an open discussion by those attending on where the industry is going and what the key areas will be to look out for in the future. This conference demonstrated the broad nature of the REMS centre and the close ties it has with industry. It will be exciting to see, as REMS continues to grow in the future and now having nearly 40 students, what the next conference will bring.
Mark Richmond

D. Todd Griffith, PhD
Sandia National Laboratories[1]
Albuquerque, New Mexico

Although significant investments have been made in recent years in offshore wind technology, the US offshore wind market is an untapped opportunity having the benefits of a strong wind resource and close proximity to major population centers along the US coast. However, the primary obstacle has been higher costs for offshore wind energy versus land-based installations. Early offshore installations are being planned for shallow water locations where project costs and risks are lower; however, the US has significant potential in deep-water locations that require floating systems. Bringing significant offshore wind energy into the mix, of course, requires that the cost of electricity generated from offshore wind turbines be competitive in the marketplace. And, deep-water solutions will be very important for the US.

This presentation will provide an overview of several offshore wind energy R&D projects at Sandia National Laboratories (USA) that are addressing unique conditions of the US offshore environment. These project snapshots will cover large-scale hurricane resilient wind turbine blade designs, novel floating vertical axis wind turbines for deep-water siting, offshore wind farm code development, and structural health monitoring & prognostics management systems. More information may be found here:

Wind energy is playing a crucial role in providing clean, renewable energy for the expanding needs of the US electricity market. The US Department of Energy’s Wind Energy Technologies Office has developed a scenario, as part of the recent Wind Vision study report[1], for wind energy to provide 10% of the nation’s electricity by 2020, 20% by 2030, and 35% by 2050. In 2016, 5.5% of US electricity was generated from wind energy. Offshore wind will play a major role in reaching out-year Wind Vision targets.

Speaker Bio:
Dr. D. Todd Griffith is a Principal Member of the Technical Staff in the Wind Energy Technologies Department at Sandia National Laboratories. He is the Technical Lead for Sandia’s Offshore Wind Energy Program. Prior to joining Sandia, he completed PhD work at Texas A&M University in Aerospace Engineering. He is an Associate Fellow of AIAA, recipient of an AIAA Distinguished Service award for leadership in wind energy conference development, presenter of over 20 invited seminars (many international), Guest Scholar of the Erasmus Mundus European Wind Energy Masters (EWEM) program at the Delft University of Technology in 2014, advisor to more than 20 students while at Sandia National Laboratories, and organizer & technical program chair of many workshops and conferences in the field of wind energy technology.

[1] Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration under contract DE-AC04-94AL85000.
The 2nd REMS Annual Conference was hosted by The University of Oxford at Wolfson College focussing on the topic of ‘The Future of the Offshore Wind Monopile’. In line with the 1st REMS conference, there was extensive participation from both industry and academia, highlighting the high level of knowledge transfer between the two. There were over 80 delegates across industry and academia, giving presentations on the three main areas of research carried out at the REMS CDT: geotechnics, manufacturing and structural integrity and design.

Dr Ross McAdam begun the first session talking about the recent advances in geotechnical design of monopiles, how the current design process has already incorporated the lessons learnt during the PISA project. It also looked at how Structural Health Monitoring can be further integrated into the monopole design process. Professor Harvey Burd followed on with a presentation on numerical modelling, presenting an innovative method based on the PISA project findings. Jasper Winks (Fistuca BV) showed a cutting-edge method of pile driving based on the ‘world’s biggest hammer’ using a combination of water and combustion, promising to decrease capital costs incurred due to noise mitigation measures and by extension the LCoE.

Dr Athanasios Kolios gave a presentation on the implications of XXL monopiles. Maria Martinez Luengo discussed the ‘Statistical Pattern Recognition Paradigm’ and how this can be used to develop efficient condition monitoring systems further decreasing the LCoE. Tim Fischer (Ramboll) discussed the importance of holistic design, highlighting that monopiles present only a single answer to a much larger question. The second session was finished by an expert panel, comprising of academia and industry discussing the challenges faced by the industry and how they may be resolved.

In the final session of the day, an excellent lecture was given by Kate Harvey (G+) talking about the importance of safety in the wind industry and the significant strides that have been made in reducing the number of incidents. She highlighted the further work that is required and how safety can be further improved by collaborative efforts within the industry. The final session of the day was concluded by Dr Ali Mehmanparast, discussing the importance of understanding residual stresses formed in monopiles during manufacture and how these residual stresses may lead to lower OPEX by informing the inspection schedule during the turbine lifetime.

The second day of the conference was planned and run by the students of the REMS CDT. Panel sessions were run on modelling and experimentation methods. Cohort 3 had their group project introduced to be completed with industry collaboration, one with Lloyds Register (feasibility of three legged jacket substructure) and the second with G+ (relating to safety issues of heavy lift operations). Previous cohorts gave their opinions and advice on how to tackle situations that may arise.
Presentation Title: Advanced Design and Control Methods for Future Large Wind Turbines
The design of next generation very large offshore wind turbines poses great engineering challenges from many points of view. In fact, given the very strong couplings that exist among the various disciplines (aero and hydrodynamics, structures, controls, systems), each choice in one domain has potential strong effects on the others. Therefore, there is a need to develop methods that can support the design process in a fully integrated manner, duly considering the strongly multidisciplinary nature of the problem. In this talk we will describe how holistic automated design procedures can help in the exploration of the design space, in the selection of most suitable configurations and in the choice of the best tradeoffs.

In addition, smarter wind turbines and wind farms are now being enabled by advanced control laws. In fact, among the many possible examples, LiDAR-based preview can be used on a wind turbine for load reduction and increased power capture , while wake steering can be used for reducing wake interference effects within a wind farm, here again with benefits in terms of power output and loading. In this talk we will describe the potential for smart controls in reducing the cost of energy from wind, and the work that we have been doing in this area with the help of sophisticated scaled wind turbine models in a large boundary layer wind tunnel and in a wave tank.

Location: Cranfield University
On the 14th October 2015 Cranfield University hosted the first REMS annual conference, with over 70 attendees from industry and academia. The conference focused on the REMS Centre’s three key research areas: structural design and integrity, manufacturing and geotechnics. Presentations from REMS academics and industrial partners ran alongside presentations from the first cohort of REMS students, highlighting the close working practice between industry and academia which is a key feature of the REMS Centre.

It was a huge honour for the REMS Centre to have Andrew Garrad of DNV GL open the conference with a powerful keynote speech, considering both the vast progress wind energy has seen in the last three decades, and its huge potential for the future. Dr. Garrad also highlighted the crucial role politics plays, alongside technology, in the continual development of the renewables industry.

Students from the first cohort of the REMS Programme summarised their current and future research in presentations throughout the day, giving insight into the breadth of research within the centre. These presentations were particularly informative for the second REMS cohort, who have recently joined the programme and will begin their own research in January 2016, following an induction term in Cranfield this autumn. A poster competition for the first REMS cohort also ran throughout the day, and congratulations go to Peter Houlston who won the poster competition with his poster entitled ‘Modelling of monopiles in clay using FLAC3D’.

Presentations from REMS academics on the SLIC project (Prof. Feargal Brennan) and the PISA project (Prof. Harvey Burd and Prof. Byron Byrne) were also highlights of the day. It was very interesting to hear about the progress in these joint industry projects, both of which aim to redefine design methods for offshore monopile support structures and help reduce the levelised cost of offshore wind energy.

The conference concluded with an expert panel Q&A session, providing a platform to discuss both the challenges faced by the offshore renewable industry and the development we can expect to see in the coming years. We look forward to building on the success of the first REMS annual conference with a larger event next year to accommodate for the continual growth of the REMS Centre.
Cranfield University has successfully organised a SimoNet/Supergen Wind Hub event in University College London on Wednesday 23rdSeptember 2015. SimoNet is joint venture between industry and academic institutes, managed by Cranfield University and University College London, and aims to facilitate communication between practitioners, researchers and all those interested in the field of Structural Integrity Monitoring and Non-destructive Testing. During the Supergen Wind Hub programme, the lately awarded grants from the Supergen Wind Challenge 2015 as well as the Supergen Wind Hub Flexible Funding Call were presented.

The event had a series of very interesting presentation from industry (ARUP, TWI, Mistras, Atkins, DONG) and (RenewableUK, Imperial College London, University of Dundee, University of Surrey, University of Bristol, Cranfield University and the University of Strathclyde). The presentations from the day will soon become available.

A poster exhibition also took place with the REMS CDT student Ms Anastasia Ioannou winning the price for the best poster.