Masters by Research (M.Eng.Sc) – Investigation of geospatial site selection methods for wave and tidal energy technologies

Post Title: Masters by Research (M.Eng.Sc) – Investigation of geospatial site selection methods for wave and tidal energy technologies

Post Project: SELKIE

Post Duration: Fixed Term Whole-Time

Salary Scale: €24,000 stipend per annum. Fees are payable by the student.

Close Date : 22 October 2021.

Position Summary

This Research Masters Studentship is part of the wider Selkie project, which is an Ireland-Wales Interreg funded project. The MaREI Research Centre in University College Cork (UCC) and Swansea University (SU) are the two main collaboration beneficiary partners in the consortium as well as industry partners from both Ireland and Wales.

MaREI Centre Background

MaREI is a key research centre within UCC’s Environmental Research Institute (ERI), which is an internationally recognised Institute for environmental research dedicated to the understanding and protection of our natural environment and to developing innovative technologies, tools and services to facilitate a transformation to a zero carbon and resource efficient society. The MaREI Centre is an SFI funded research centre headquartered in the ERI and includes 13 other Universities and Third Level Institutes from across Ireland, has 50 industrial partners and has accumulated research funding of approximately €60m. It combines the expertise of a wide range of research groups and industry partners, with the shared mission of solving the main scientific, technical and socio-economic challenges across the climate, energy and marine spaces.  MaREI is also funded by SEAI, EI, EPA, ERDF, EU, HEA, Marine Institute, DCCAE and IRC, as well as through contributions from our industry partners. Researchers in the MaREI Centre have over 30 years of experience in conducting fundamental and applied research supported by competitively won national and international funding, and commercial contracts with government agencies and industry. MaREI’s strengths lie in the multi-disciplinary nature of its research teams, allowing it to combine insights across areas such as MRE Technologies, Materials & Structures, Observations & Operations, Coastal & Marine Systems, Bioenergy, Energy Policy & Modelling and Renewable Energy Management.

SELKIE Background

Selkie is an Ireland-Wales INTERREG operation funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government. Ireland-Wales INTERREG operations are administered by Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO).

Selkie is a 3.5-year project that commenced in June 2019 and has six partners with UCC coordinating the project and leading in a number of work packages.

The aims of the Selkie project are:

  1. Establish a cross-border network of Ocean Energy SMEs and supply chain companies;
  2. Conduct industry-academic collaborative R&D projects;
  3. Transfer R&D knowledge to wave and tidal industry/SME stakeholders, thereby advancing the technology sector as whole;
  4. Assist Irish and Welsh SMEs to progress along the path to commercialisation.

Description of Research

WP4 of the Selkie project focuses on the development of a GIS techno-economic (GIS-TE) tool, suitable for Irish and Welsh wave and tidal energy enterprises and developers. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is often used to identify suitable sites for Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) installations. Much of this work has been geared towards the installation of offshore wind energy farms due to the commercial readiness of this technology in comparison to other forms of MRE. The research here will focus on GIS for wave and tidal energy applications specifically. In the context of WP4 of the Selkie project, a significant challenge is the development of appropriate spatial data critical to the formulation of an appropriate method of conducting the site suitability analysis based on various wave and tidal energy device designs. This project will investigate a range of these crucially important inputs and methodologies to the formulation of said site suitability analysis with rigour. Students with a strong GIS  and data handling background are highly desired.

Key Duties and Responsibilities

The Masters candidate will conduct a specified programme of research,  in collaboration with a PhD student who is leading the GIS development, under the supervision and direction of Dr. Jimmy Murphy from the Environmental Research Institute’s MaREI centre for climate energy and the marine at UCC. The research is expected to provide details of possible site suitability analysis inputs and methodologies, to produce an international peer-reviewed journal publication and contribute to the overall Selkie Project. The student will also assist with other aspects of WP4 associated with the organisation and management of our data.

Selection Criteria

  • Minimum 2H1 (second class honours, grade 1) honours degree (or equivalent) in a discipline which contained a considerable element of GIS (or anticipated minimum 2H1 class honours or equivalent if student has not completed their degree programme at time of application).
  • Proven technical competence and accomplishment in GIS – particularly spatial analysis, computational modelling and marine applications of GIS.
  • Demonstrable capability of working within a project team and ability to innovate.
  • Good communication, organisation and interpersonal skills.
  • Excellent academic writing skills in the language of English.

Contact and application information

Dr. Jimmy Murphy, Senior Lecturer, Email : ei.ccu@yhprum.ymmij, Phone :  +353 21 4864300


TJ Horgan, Selkie Project Manager, Email: ei.ccu@nagroh.jt, Phone: +353 21 4864314

To Apply:

Please send

  1. Short cover letter describing your motivation for applying for the position and how your experience and expertise match the research topic.
  2. CV

to Ms Grainne Lynch (ei.ccu@hcnyl.enniarg ).