1:40pm Sunday 7th March 2010
By Stephen Ivall
A&P Falmouth have agreed a joint two year project working with the Peninsula Research Institute for Marine Renewable Energy (PRIMaRE) based at the University of Exeter’s Tremough Campus, Penryn.
PRIMaRE is a joint £15 million institute – backed by ERDF Convergence and the South West RDA - for research into harnessing the energy from the sea, bringing together the technology and marine expertise of the Universities of Exeter and Plymouth. Its team of world-class academic staff and researchers is dedicated to the support and development of the marine renewable energy sector.
Currently A&P Falmouth focus on providing ship repair and port operation services but have identified a new opportunity in the field of the construction, development and servicing of marine renewable energy devices, prompted by the establishment of the new Wave Hub site.
The collaboration was made possible via a government backed knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) designed to promote joint working between universities and business, particularly in the area of innovation.
KTP is funded by the Technology Strategy Board in addition to 18 other funding organisations including Research Councils and Regional Development Agencies. KTP is one of a number of programmes led by the Technology Strategy Board aiming to accelerate business innovation.
The South West RDA and the ERDF Convergence and Competitiveness Programmes are providing the investment for the PRIMaRE venture, whose mission is to become a centre of excellence in marine renewable energy through the delivery of research and technology transfer to business.
As Mike Reynolds, Port Operations Director at A&P says, “This exciting project is another step in establishing Cornwall at the forefront of the up and coming marine renewable energy industry. The KTP represents an opportunity to develop a low-carbon business strategy whilst providing a career for a high calibre graduate here in Cornwall."
Dr Lars Johanning, a senior lecturer in Renewable Energy and leader of the PRIMaRE Marine Operation group at the University of Exeter said: “Global climate change is a momentous challenge to us all. The development of marine renewable technologies and closely linked business solutions are vital. Furthermore, the success of this joint KTP proposal highlights the commitment of the PRIMaRE research group to work closely with local businesses and provide local employment opportunities.” Carleen Kelemen, Director of the Convergence Partnership Office, said: “This project is a great example of theWave Hub and PRIMaRE activity as a catalyst for new business opportunities and supply chain development.
“It embodies a key aim of the ERDF and ESF Convergence programmes – to marry academia, business and research to achieve worldwide commercial competitiveness and strengthen our economy.”
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