Seven successful applicants have been awarded funding under the Marine Institute’s SmartBay National Infrastructure Access Programme (NIAP) following the 2018/2019 funding call.
The awardees will receive support of approximately €25,000 per project to trial and validate their technology and/or gain access to the relevant data feeds to carry out scientific research at the SmartBay Marine and Renewable Energy Test Site.
The call was open to both academia and industry, and other relevant organisations, on the island of Ireland, to access the SmartBay test site and subsea observatory.
These awards will see organisations deploy equipment on the test site, connect to and access the underwater observatory, and analyse the many data feeds which are collected on-site every day.
Over the past seven years, more than 50 projects have been awarded funding, facilitating a wide range of multi-disciplinary marine research, development and innovation at this national facility.
The first projects are preparing for deployment and testing over the coming month.
The National Infrastructure Access Programme is funded by the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme with the support of the Irish Government.
Dr Peter Heffernan CEO of the Marine Institute said, “The NIAP programme represents a great opportunity for both industry and academia to utilise continuous data feeds from the infrastructure available at the SmartBay Test Site to prove novel technologies through deployments in real-sea conditions. A key output of the Marine Institute’s Strategic Plan, guided by the Government’s marine plan Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, is to support a thriving and sustainable marine economy. These NIAP awards are aligned with the goals of the National Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017–2021.”
In addition, SmartBay Ireland has recently transitioned from the OHSAS 18001 occupational health and safety standard to the new ISO 45001 standard. ISO 45001 is an entirely new, internationally recognised, standard for occupational health and safety management systems.