Two funded PhD Positions at COER

The Centre for Ocean Energy Research (COER) at Maynooth University, Ireland has further opportunities for well-qualified applicants interested in PhD level research on the control of wave energy systems as part of 2 prestigious new projects under the supervision of Prof. John Ringwood FIEEE:

  • Economic wave energy through technical innovation (SeaChange)
  • MaxRotorWEC – a new control strategy for cyclorotor-based wave energy converters

SeaChange Project

Despite the vast global wave energy potential, and the need to diversify the range of renewable energy sources to provide dispatchable carbon-free energy, the current cost of wave energy makes it relatively uneconomic in relation to other renewable, and non-renewable, energy forms. This project proposes a combination of strategic technological improvements, with both broad applicability as well as specific device improvements, to effect a significant impact on the economic performance of wave energy systems and produce the step change needed to accelerate the technical and commercial development of wave power. Collaborators include University of Illinois (USA), CorPower Ocean (Sweden), Ocean Harvesting (Sweden), Mocean (UK), National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL, USA) and TU Denmark.

MaxRotorWEC Project

This project is dedicated to the development of a radically new control strategy for cyclorotor-based Wave Energy Converters (WEC), and is applicable to other cyclorotor-based energy devices (wind, tidal and wave). The proposed control strategy will increase efficiency, increase energy extracted and extend the device’s lifespan. The most recent experimental and numerical simulations have shown that cyclo-rotor WECs are currently 40% more efficient than traditional WECs, and potentially 45% more efficient if the optimal design and real time control method is derived, making it competitive with offshore wind energy. Collaborators include Atargis (USA) and TU Hamburg (Germany).


Both projects are funded by Science Foundation Ireland and the successful candidates will join a dynamic group of 30 people working on developing innovative solutions to the provision of clean energy from an untapped source wave energy, with projects funded from various national and international sources. The successful candidates will join project teams consisting of PhD students, a postdoctoral researcher and a supervising academic, Prof. John Ringwood FIEEE.


Applicants should be well qualified academically to bachelor’s or master’s degree level in one of the following areas: mechanical/mechatronic engineering, electronic engineering, control engineering, or exceptional students in applied maths or hydrodynamics. The project will require a mix of skills including excellent written and oral communication skills and programming ability, mathematical modelling, control design and estimation.

For further information contact For more information about COER, see the website and watch the video below: