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Driving energy innovation across the University of the Highlands and Islands

By University of the Highlands & Islands

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Coastal wind farm
Coastal wind farm

Energy is a key research theme for the University of the Highlands and Islands. The university is committed to building a reputation for excellence in research across a range of energy topics critical to the development of the Highlands and Islands region and to the long-term sustainability of the economy of Scotland.

We believe our university is uniquely placed to make an important contribution to global research into new energy sources. Our environment boasts internationally important landscapes and seascapes, and can be considered the primary European geography for renewable energy developments.

The university’s research teams have a special understanding of the key issues surrounding the interface between energy generation and natural environments, be they marine, coastal or terrestrial.

Our Energy Innovation project is a joint campus initiative funded through the Scottish Funding Council. Launched in 2017, the project aims to bring together researchers from across the university partnership to grow research grant applications, increase work with national innovation centres and increase our engagement and collaboration with industry partners.

The project is led by the team at the Scottish Association for Marine Science UHI, with involvement from Lews Castle College UHI, the Environment Research Institute at North Highland College UHI, the Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology, NAFC Marine Centre UHI, Perth College UHI and Inverness College UHI.

As part of the Energy Innovation project, the university is keen to increase engagement with industry and researchers in the field. In May, the team exhibited at the All Energy 2019 conference at the SEC in Glasgow. This annual conference and exhibition targets the UK renewable and low-carbon energy community and has an attendance of more than 7000 people over two days. The event enabled us to make fantastic new contacts and we are looking forward to seeing where these new collaborations lead.

In September, Eden Court in Inverness will host the 2019 Scottish Renewables Marine Energy Conference. Scotland’s wave and tidal industries continue to push the boundaries of technology and project development, with devices and projects continually breaking records. This event aims to discuss the challenges and opportunities in the marine renewable energy field, explore the latest policy issues and highlight the cutting-edge developments that are ongoing in this area. Industry leaders, public sector representatives and investors will all be in attendance.

The University of the Highlands and Islands Energy Innovation project will be sponsoring the conference breakfast at the event and will have a stand in the main conference area. During this breakfast, a group of second and third-year marine renewable energy PhD students will be displaying and talking about their projects, giving them an opportunity to showcase their work directly to the industry in which they hope to pursue their careers.

If you are interested in attending the Marine Energy conference, visit www.scottishrenewables.com/events/marine19 and also remember to sign up for the breakfast event on Tuesday, September 10.

If you would like more information about what we do or wish to be involved in our project, please email energy.innovation@uhi.ac.uk

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