On 28 January, our first student cohort seized the opportunity to present their PhD research proposals to staff from the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult – one of the driving forces behind UK innovation in offshore wind. Attending the meeting were Chris Hill, ORE Catapult’s Operational Director and lead of their Joint Industry Projects and research activities, and Ben George, ORE Catapult’s General Manager in the Humber.
The Aura CDT students had already made presentations to peers and academics as part of their PG Dip training. However, they reported that the experience of presenting to industry figures was a new and daunting challenge.
Rachael Keslake said: “The presentation was intimidating to prepare for but it was a great experience being able to talk about our future projects to key industry people to whom our research will one day benefit.“
Hannah Marsden agreed: “I was nervous to present my proposal as it is a very different feeling to present to industry partners rather than university peers. However, it was exciting to research more about the topic and I was pleased with the industrial support and interest that I received. I am very excited to start work on the PhD in September.”
Dr Rob Dorrell, Aura CDT Deputy Director, commented: “We had excellent presentations from our talented Aura CDT students for our industry partners. The talks were really engaging and generated a lot of discussion. I’m looking forward to seeing the research generated in these projects.”
The event took place at the University of Hull’s new Aura Innovation Centre (AIC) – a great resource available to Aura CDT students. The AIC’s workshop is home to specialist 3D printers with the capabilities to make plastic, composite and metal prototypes. Students may use the advanced fabrication zone to print circuit boards, fabricate novel composite materials and view the nano-scale with optical microscopes. The AIC aims to connect businesses with university research power, public sector and local communities in one convenient place; bringing the region together to shape the future of low carbon innovation
The ORE Catapult is the UK’s leading technology innovation and research centre for offshore wind, wave and tidal energy and is an active partner in Aura. The ORE Catapult has a number of regional offices, including the Operations and Maintenance Centre of Excellence in partnership with the University of Hull. They recently announced their Humber expansion plans, which will see a new operations base open in Grimsby.
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