BOCA RATON, Fla. (March 10, 2014) – FAU’s SNMREC recently conducted the first at-sea tests of its ocean current research turbine offshore Fort Pierce. Two, one-hour tow tests provided researchers with new data on the turbine’s behavior for further design, development and validation.
People & Teams
The Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Center is a research and development center managed within FAU’s College of Engineering and Computer Science. The SNMREC Executive Director establishes and implements strategy with the help of the SNMREC's Senior Management Team. The Director of Engineering Research is responsible for coordinating engineering research conducted by faculty from the College of Engineering and Computer Science (COECS) related to marine renewables. Faculty and researchers from the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, the Center for Environmental Studies, COECS, and the Division of Research also participate in helping to advise the SNMREC's staff on various multidisciplinary topics.
The Center takes a two-pronged approach to tactics. The engineering design work for SNMREC equipment—the testing infrastructure—is the responsibility of a team of engineers on the SNMREC staff, while most of the basic research and development is folded into the graduate programs of various FAU colleges. Typically, a manageable portion of a research and development project will be assigned to a graduate student as a thesis or dissertation project, and the student and his/her graduate advisor receive support for their activities. Using this model, SNMREC has supported the work of more than 40 graduate students in 4 FAU colleges and 3 partner universities.
One of the most important capabilities at FAU, from SNMREC’s perspective, is the large-scale fabrication facilities at the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute. This in-house capability allows close interactions of the SNMREC engineers with the fabricators, who have extensive experience with blue-water engineering development. As a result, the SNMREC testing equipment has the levels of safety and reliability appropriate for the demanding conditions offshore.