Experiments carried out in the ocean basins allow different structures to be tested in their environment of use – river or sea. The structures studied range from fishing vessels, to ships, to equipment linked to marine renewable energies such as wind turbines, floating turbines, tidal turbines or wave power systems.
A team of 12 people attached to the Laboratory in Hydrodynamics, Energetics and Atmospheric Environment (Centrale Nantes/CNRS) is tasked with supporting the research activities by designing and carrying out tests using these facilities.
The facilities comprise four tanks:
Second largest in France, largest in an academic environment
- 140 m long – 5 m wide – 3 m deep
- It is equipped with a towing carriage, which has a top speed of 8m/s, and with a wave maker, which generates regular unidirectional waves
- Study of ships in still waters and in sea-swell, testing the motion resistance of ships with and without swell, hull optimisation, seakeeping and stability of ships and floating structures and testing Marine Renewable Energy technologies
HYDRODYNAMIC AND OCEAN ENGINEERING TANK:
The largest in France for this kind of testing
- 50 m long – 30 m wide – 5 m deep – Central shaft measuring 5 m by 5 m and 10m deep
- Equipped with a segmented wave maker, composed of 48 hinged flaps which generate directional waves and a wind generator producing an air flow of 3m by 3m with speeds up to 15m/s
- Maximum height of waves: 1m for regular waves, 0.8m for irregular waves
- Study of deep water offshore systems, seakeeping trials for ships and ship manoeuvrability in swell, study of the performance of wave power systems and floating windturbines, on scales varying between 1:5 to 1:50 and wave and wind interaction on fixed and moored structures
SHALLOW WATER TANK:
- 20 m long – 9.5 m wide – 1 m deep
- Equiped by two movable motorised footbridges and a flap-type wavemaker to generate unidirectional waves
- Study of support structures for offshore wind turbines
- 10 m long – 2m wide – 1.1 m deep – 300m3 water
- Study of marine propulsion systems, tidal turbines and stationary flows
What experiences are there for Marine Energies?
- floating wind turbines (behavior at sea due to waves and wind),
- tidal turbines (installation and maintenance),
- wave energy systems (evaluation of system performance),
- hybrid, multi-energy systems (feasibility studies), …
Marine Renewable Energy systems performance assessments have in recent years become as extensive as the more conventional issues of testing ships or offshore structures.