• Research,

SEM-REV joins the OPEN-C Foundation

It's official: as of 1 September 2023, the SEM-REV offshore test site is now solely in the hands of the OPEN-C Foundation. Centrale Nantes, which in 2007 initiated what will rapidly become the first multi-technology offshore test site, is continuing its research activities and supporting the site in its development. Through this transfer of activity, and as a founder of the OPEN-C Foundation, Centrale Nantes is playing its part in driving forward France's energy transition through Marine Renewable Energies. We take a look back at SEM-REV's progress to date, and its future within the newly-created OPEN-C Foundation, which will coordinate offshore testing focused entirely on floating wind turbines and marine renewable energies!

on September 14, 2023

An innovative idea back in 2007, SEM-REV has become a pivotal testing facility for MRE in France since 2015.

The SEM-REV adventure began more than 15 years ago at Centrale Nantes and the Research Laboratory in Hydrodynamics, Energetics & Atmospheric Environment (LHEEA), which is jointly supervised with the CNRS. Already a pioneer in the field of Marine Energies, the laboratory's teams have several decades of expertise in wave power, in particular with ocean engineering tanks.

The idea of being able to carry out testing in real-life conditions - the ultimate step in validating a technology before moving on to commercialisation - may have appeared bold in 2007. And yet, responding to the R&D needs of developing Marine Renewable Energy technologies was becoming a major challenge for the emergence of a new industrial sector in France that could meet the emerging needs for energy transition. The Pays de la Loire region, which was the first to support SEM-REV, the French government via the "Investment for the Future" programme, the European Union, the Loire Atlantique area, Centrale Nantes and the CNRS (French National Center for Scientific Research) together provided the funding for this brand-new testing facility in France.

This was the starting point for the construction of SEM-REV, which went through a number of stages before becoming an operational site for industry and academia in 2015. Since then, 3 offshore energy recovery prototypes have been tested: BW Ideol's Floatgen floating wind turbine, the first offshore wind turbine in France, GEPS Techno's wave energy platform and LHYFE's hydrogen production platform. There have also been dozens of projects covering a wide range of activities, such as the characterization of meteo-ocean data, the testing of technological components, the monitoring and environmental characterization of the site and the impact of installed prototypes, equipment maintenance, as well as support for the training of rescue services at sea, for example... This is another of SEM-REV's core missions.

SEM-REV has been run since 1 September 2023 by the OPEN-C Foundation via an exclusive agreement with Centrale Nantes. 

Centrale Nantes, a key player in shaping the ocean engineering R&D sector

Centrale Nantes has positioned itself as a European leader in research and innovation in ocean engineering and marine renewable energies, with its study programmes, as well as its world-class experimental platforms. The LHEEA laboratory, which is jointly supervised with the CNRS, has 50 years' experience in ocean engineering and the development of unique experimental platforms, from first concept to full-scale demonstration and transfer to industrial players. Its research focuses on the safety of marine structures, the decarbonization of maritime transport and MRE. Wave, tidal and wind technologies are first studied via numerical modeling using software developed by the laboratory's research teams, before being tested in Centrale Nantes' tanks, including France's largest (30m x 50m) ocean engineering tank equipped with wave and wind generators.

Learn more
Published on September 25, 2023 Updated on September 25, 2023