Wednesday, 08 February 2012 01:00

MERMAID Project

The MERMAID project funded by the European Union brings together 28 research centers, universities and companies in the renewable energy sector in 12 countries, with nearly 6 million euros.

Europe's oceans will be subject to a massive development of marine infrastructure in the near future. The most obvious is the number of offshore energy production facilities such as offshore wind farms, the exploitation of wave energy, the expansion of electrical connections and also the development and implementation of marine aquaculture. All these activities will also lead to an increased need for infrastructure to support marine installation and the continuous operation of the facilities. However both the economic cost and the environmental impact have to be reduced in order to increase the viability of the marine area. To make better use of these infrastructures, the project studies the feasibility of its use for other purposes, such as sustainable aquaculture or creating habitats for the proliferation of marine communities,  two of the main objectives of the European Union under this call.

Activities led by IH Cantabria will focus on gathering information on existing platforms and devices of the energy obtained by other groups within the MERMAID project and will be used to analyze the compatibility of different energy devices for integration into multiple use platforms (MUP) or integration in multipurpose farms. Numerical models of systems connecting devices energy production offshore and onshore power grid is developed, and energy storage systems have been investigated both at sea and in the viability tierra.Además Connection to the network self-sustaining systems of platforms, for example, oriented aquaculture will be investigated.

The objective of the task of IH Cantabria and other partners is to provide a map for the design and implementation of multipurpose farms. Physical modelling willl also be conducted at the CCOB, in which a to scale multipurpose platform farm will be built and studied in depth. Different devices share the same platform and the area of the sea. Two design maps will be provided by IH Cantabria from the analysis of the different integration schemes. The design of the maps takes into account the conditions of marine climate, geographic limitations, geophysical and device compatibility, etc.. All of this information will help provide researchers with a clear idea of what should be included in an MUP project that can be used to study the feasibility of future economic evaluations.

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