UNH Ocean Seminar

The Challenges and Opportunities of Marine Renewables

Dr. Stephanie Ordóñez Sánchez
Strathclyde Chancellor’s Fellow

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
University of Strathclyde

Friday, Apr. 30, 2021, 3:10pm

Achieving commercial and financial viability in the marine energy industry is challenging due to the complex and variant nature of the conditions seen by the marine converter technology. Non-uniformity and unsteadiness occurring in the marine environment in the form of turbulence, sheared flows, surface waves, and tidal cycles mean that tidal turbines are subjected to a wide range of dynamic loading characteristics. The turbine components then must withstand the maximum forces induced by the hydrodynamics and be resistant to fatigue damage due to the cyclic nature of these loads. The high variability in the flow characteristics also has implications for the optimisation of the device in terms of the sizing of components. Fluctuations in power production, resultant from the dynamic tidal resource, pose significant challenges for the power conditioning and control systems. Therefore, it is imperative that the realistic loading characteristics are quantified and how these interact with the turbine system are fully understood. This presentation highlights the research undertaken to tackle and understand these loading conditions and presents the challenges and opportunities arising with the technology reaching commercial technology readiness levels.

In her presentation, Dr. Sánchez spoke about Homeward Bound—a great initiative for women in STEM who are focused on climate change. For more infomation, please visit these links:


Dr. Stephanie Ordóñez Sánchez is a mechanical engineer from Mexico interested in developing sustainable solutions to meet our growing energy demands. She currently works at Strathclyde University as a Chancellor’s Fellow. Her line of research is focused on the offshore renewable energy sector and particularly, undertaking experimental research in marine energy converters to analyse performance and dynamic loading. She is a member of the technical committees of the European Wave and Tidal Energy (EWTEC) and the Pan-American Marine Energy Conferences (PAMEC). She encourages young females to study STEMM areas through her involvement in the US-Mexico foundation initiative “Mujeres líderes en STEAM” and now through the Homeward Bound initiative. She enjoys walking her two dachshunds, wild swimming and running.