The 6th RV Jones Distinguished Lecture in Engineering at Aberdeen University

In April the 6th RV Jones Distinguished Lecture in Engineering on "Tidal Power: Opportunities for the UK" was delivered by the Head of the Department of Engineering Science, Professor Guy Houlsby.

Professor Guy HoulsbyDuring his lecture at King's College Conference Centre, University of Aberdeen, Professor Guy Houlsby explored some of the ways that we can understand the tides and estimate how much energy we can extract from tidal power.

Professor Houlsby highlighted that the UK is surrounded by waters with some of the highest tidal velocities and tidal ranges worldwide, and that this places us in an exceptionally favourable position to exploit the tides for the generation of electricity.

He said: "We need to understand the interactions between turbines and tidal flows at every scale from the design of a single turbine blade up to an entire geographical region. Some of the technologies proposed to extract energy from the tides have been compared to the progress and development of the offshore wind power industry, with which there are many parallels".

Professor Houlsby's main research was for many years in geotechnical engineering, and he is an internationally recognised expert on offshore foundations. He has also carried out extensive work in theoretical soil mechanics and plasticity theory. Recently he has developed a particular interest in renewable energy, and has a rapidly expanding research group working on tidal power. He regularly lectures in the U.K. and abroad, and has acted as a specialist consultant in civil, geotechnical and offshore engineering on many projects. He is a Director of the recently formed company Kepler Energy Ltd, which is developing tidal power systems using the novel “Transverse Horizontal Axis Water Turbine” (THAWT). He is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers and of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

About the RV Jones Distinguished Lecture Series

The lecture series commemorates Professor R. V. Jones, one of the University of Aberdeen’s most distinguished professors. He is best known for his work co-ordinating scientific intelligence during the second world war, working with radio navigation, early applications of radar, and interpretation of intelligence on flying bombs, rockets, and insight into a wide range of other physical and engineering problems. He took a great interest in promoting public understanding of science, for twenty years he edited the Notes and Records of the Royal Society. He was renowned for his enthusiastic undergarduate lectures and lively scientific demonstrations.

Acknowledgement: University of Aberdeen