About us: Partners and funders

Queens University Belfast

Queen’s University Belfast

Queen's University, Belfast is internationally recognised for its research excellence. Our Oyster wave power technology originated from research conducted at the university. We continue to work in close partnership with a specialist team based at the university's Environmental Engineering Research Centre (EERC).

The Centre is led by Trevor Whittaker, Professor of Coastal Engineering and a recognised leader in the field of wave energy.

Professor Whittaker was one of the pioneers in the design and installation of both the UK's first and second grid-connected wave power plant on the Isle of Islay in Scotland in the 1980s and 1990s.

In 2001 Professor Whittaker's team began to research flap-type wave power devices with a view to reducing the cost of energy.  This research ultimately led to the development of Oyster, a new kind of wave power technology designed to take advantage of the amplification surge wave forces in the nearshore region. Aquamarine Power was set up to develop the Oyster device commercially.  We now have a five-year research collaboration agreement with Queen's University, Belfast.

We have four permanent members of staff based within the EERC at Queen's University, Belfast, two of whom obtained their PhDs under Professor Trevor Whittaker. We also fund a post-doctoral researcher, two PhD students and a technician within the group.

Professor Whittaker's team has conducted much of the physical model testing of Oyster at 40th to 25th scale at the world-class tank testing facilities at Queen's University, Belfast. We also utilise Queen's University Marine Laboratory at Portaferry.  These facilities allow us to test large arrays of Oysters in more complex sea states.

The focus of the research group at Queen’s University, Belfast is research excellence towards commercial development. Our work with Aquamarine Power on the development of Oyster is a prime example of this.
Trevor Whittaker, Professor of Coastal Engineering
Queen's University, Belfast