Tuesday, August 20, 2019
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Offshore deployment of CRIS underwater robot

15th May 2018

The CRIS team went out to test our newest robot in the waters off the coast of Ireland. The Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Étaín was deployed from the ILV Granuaile during the 3 days ship-time.

The Marine Institute funded ship-time took place off the shores of Galway on 10th-12th of May. During the three day deployment, our team performed several tests with ROV Étaín.

ROV Étaín was funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), and is operated by CRIS from our UL base at Limerick Docks. It is equipped with the UL-developed advanced control software (OceanRings), precision navigation and flight control, state-of-the-art robotic imaging and sonar systems and fully automated manipulator systems. During the ship-time we ensured the robot is ready to operate in challenging conditions to inspect, repair and maintain Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) facilities.

UL’s Centre for Robotics & Intelligence Systems (CRIS) is part of the (SFI supported) National Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy Ireland (MaREI).


CRIS launches robot for use in Marine Renewable Energy sector

23rd April 2018

We unveiled a unique €2-million underwater robot at the docks in Limerick city today. The Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Étaín was officially launched by Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen TD.

The Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) funded ROV Étaín can operate in challenging wind, wave, and tidal conditions and will be used to inspect, repair and maintain Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) facilities.

Speaking at the launch, Minister of State Pat Breen said: “Internationally, the offshore renewable energy sector is set to rapidly grow which will help to reduce carbon emissions and arrest climate change. Ireland has the best wind and wave resources in Europe and it is vital that as an island nation we invest and engage in research in the area of marine energy technology. Therefore, I’m delighted to today launch this ROV which will support Ireland’s growing offshore renewable energy sector.”

Researchers at UL’s Centre for Robotics & Intelligence Systems (CRIS) have enhanced a commercially available ROV system (Forum Energy Technology’s Comanche ROV) with UL-developed advanced control software (OceanRings), precision navigation and flight control, state-of-the-art robotic imaging and sonar systems and fully automated manipulator systems. These advanced features allow the robot to operate in the challenging environment of ocean renewable energy to support inspection, repair and maintenance operations.

Professor Daniel Toal, Director of the Centre for Robotics & Intelligence Systems at UL, explained: “Operation support in the MRE sector usually occurs on floating infrastructures so conditions are regularly beyond the capability and operating limits of commercial ROV technology. This means new smart ROV systems capability is necessary and that is what our team at UL has developed and launched today.”

UL’s Centre for Robotics & Intelligence Systems is part of the SFI funded National Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy Ireland (MaREI) www.MaREI.ie.  The MaREI robotics lab at UL leads operations support engineering projects with industry partners such as Shannon Foynes Port Company, ESB, Ireland’s National Space Centre, SonarSim, Teledyne, Resolve Marine, CIL, IDS Monitoring, among others.

“The advanced robotics technology developed at UL will be crucial in supporting the burgeoning marine renewable energy sector. It will also play a significant role in reducing the cost of installing and maintaining large-scale offshore energy generation infrastructure. As the worldwide marine renewable energy sector grows, UL’s research contribution in this area will have even greater impact. I am particularly happy to see this advanced UL technology being developed, trialled and launched in Limerick City docks. The UL robotics base at the docks is just one of our commitments to grow and maintain strong links between the campus and the heart of Limerick city, with strategic partners like Shannon Foynes Port Company,” University of Limerick President, Dr Des Fitzgerald, stated.

EU Marine robots Kick-Off Meeting

22nd March 2018

The EU Marine Robots Kick Off Meeting was successfully completed in Porto, Portugal on the 1st and 2nd of March 2018. CRIS was represented by Dr. Daniel Toal, director, and Dr. Gerard Dooly. The meeting facilitated partner introductions and allowed a detailed examination of all project future activities and goals.

During the two day meeting, partners had the opportunity to discuss various topics, including project objectives, the governance structure, milestones, management processes and tools, project roadmap and partners responsibilities.

This meeting was a great chance to consolidate the consortium, project management key points and to map the road ahead!


Science at Sea photo of Petar and Oran working

27th November 2017

Petar and Oran, two of our researchers, participated in the Science@Sea course last week. This intensive 2 days course was held on RV Celtic Voyager mobilising from Cork, 22-23rd November 2017.

The researchers had the opportunity to experience marine science field work offshore in an applied skills training field setting focused on data collection and a multidisciplinary approach to investigating the marine environment. Some core marine disciplines covered were: oceanography, benthic ecology, fisheries biology, marine geosciences and hydrography.

Science@Sea training programmes are supported by the Marine Institute, and funded under the MArine Research Programme of the Irish Government.


MMRRC Awarded an MI Funding Grant

Minister Creed, MMRRC Director Daniel Toal, Research Fellow Gerard Dooly and representatives of other sucessful project at the announcement of Marine Institute Funding Grant

24th November 2017

CRIS was awarded one of 19 Marine Institute funding grants totalling €3.3 million on 21st November 2017. The announcement took place in Dublin city centre on 22nd November, with more then 20 researchers present, (including CRIS Director Daniel Toal and Research Fellow Gerard Dooly). The grant awarded to CRIS is for the acquisition of a ‘Hybrid Fixed Wing Vertical Take-Off & Landing UAV for the Marine Sector’.

Minister Creed announced the Marine Institute funding grants in two research areas: Specialist Marine Equipment and Ocean Law and Marine Governance. This Marine Institute programme represents an investment of more than €2.5 million. The HEI (Higher Education Institutes) sector received 14 of these grants, while the other five were granted to industry led proposals (SMEs).

Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute, said the funding grants would enable pioneering marine research projects to develop in decades to come. Minister Creed expressed his delight with announcing the funding grants as a next step forward for many new projects in the marine sector.

More info can be found here.

Cork Science Week 2017

20th November 2017

4 MMRRC researchers headed down to Cork to join the MaREI stand during the Cork Science Week 2017 held in the Neptune Stadium on 19th November 2017.

The Cork Science Week was a week long event, accompanied by similar events all around Ireland, that are making science more approachable to everyone, from children to elders. We had a great time talking with curious children and their parents, mostly about our recent recovery from the shores of Doolin, a Black Rock mini boat that crossed the Atlantic Ocean and survived the Ophelia Storm before getting stranded on Irish shores. The Black Rock mini boat will be repaired and sent back to sea in the beginning of the new year!

Black Rock Recovery

9th November 2017

3 PhD researchers from MMRRC recovered a mini boat Black Rock from the rocky shores of Doolin, Co. Clare. The recovery took place in the afternoon of the 11th of November 2017, after Swan's Island Elementary School contacted one of our researchers.

Black Rock made her way to Ireland after being deployed into the Gulf Stream on 21st of May 2017, under the NOAA project know as Educational Passages. Sixth, seventh and eighth grade students from Swan's Island Elementary School, Maine, helped to prepare the mini boat for a long journey and were able to track her movements, as it got pushed across the Atlantic Ocean by wind and current. During a total of 172 days at sea, Black Rock has successfully battled the rough Atlantic Ocean and Storm Ophelia, with peak winds of 185 km/h.

Black Rock is now situated in the Rooftop Garden, just outside of the MMRRC lab, Electronic and Computer Engineering Department, at the University of Limerick. Her current position allows the GPS tracking ping to escape and share the location with watchers all over the world. Check it out on the live map! Black Rock will make her appearance at the Science Week events later on in the week, as we are searching for a local Irish school to help us repair the mini boat before we send her on the return journey in early 2018.

Needless to say the students at the Swan's Island Elementary School were delighted to hear of the safe recovery of the Black Rock and look forward to following its next endeavour.

You can find out more about the Black Rock launch and the Educational Passages programme.


Marine Technology and Renewable Energy Research Day

27th October 2017

MMRRC organised a Marine Technology and Renewable Energy Research Day on the 26th October 2017. The event was held in the Electronic and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Limerick, hosting a number of external visitors from all over Ireland.

Our researchers presented the variety of project we are working on, and we had a chance to discuss new ideas and development opportunities with visitors from NetFeasa, ESB, Shannon Foynes Port Company, Limerick City & County Council, and many more. At the end of the day, the visitors enjoyed a tour of Limerick Docks, where they saw a demonstration of some of our equipment.

EWTEC delegation visits Limerick Docks' testing base

1st September 2017

Earlier today, MMRRC welcomed a EWTEC delegation led by Prof Tony Lewis. The delegation visited UL marine robotics and gKinetic renewables testing base in Limerick Docks.

The European Wave and Tidal Energy Conference (EWTEC) 2017 conference took place in Cork earlier this week. As a part of the last day of the conference, a delegation from EWTEC, led by Prof Tony Lewis, came to Limerick to visit the testing base we have at the Limerick Docks.


MaREI Newsletters

edited: 7th July 2017

4th October 2016

A new MaREI newsletter is available. Check out the July 2017 edition here.

Previous Newsletters:
June 2017
April 2017
March 2017
September 2016
June 2016

David Adley for Analog Devices

7th July 2017

MMRRC researcher David Adley, gave a talk on the 6th July 2017, as a part of the Monthly Seminar event, hosted at the University of Limerick by Analog Devices.

In his talk David discussed his current research interest - robotic manipulators capable of  imitating a person's movements and actions; his work in MMRRC and the possibilities of state of the art robotic manipulators.

The talk, intendet for Analog Devices employees, was well received and an interesting discussion followed the Q&A. We are looking forward to seeing the future research stimulated by this talk!


SeaFest 2017

6th July 2017

SeaFest 2017: Maritime Festival, Marine Trade Show, Digital Ocean Conference & Our Ocean Wealth Summit, was held in Galway, from 29th June to 2nd July 2017.

As a part of SeaFest 2017, our researchers Daniel Toal, Edin Omerdic, and Romano Capocci, attended a two-day Marine Trade Show, the Digital Ocean Conference and Our Ocean Wealth Summit at NUI Galway. The Marine Trade Show showcased some of the highly innovative products and services emerging from more than 60 companies and organisations across all sectors of the marine economy. The Digital Ocean – Ireland’s Marine Engineering and Technology Conference featured a selection of international marine technology companies, innovative Irish Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Ireland's technology and research centres, focusing on specific opportunities for technology innovations to drive the global blue economy. Our Ocean Wealth Summit forms a key part of the Government’s integrated plan for Ireland’s marine sector, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, and brings together world renowned speakers, industry experts, business development agencies and the Irish business and marine research community for focused discussions on this year’s theme of ‘Rethinking Boundaries and Innovation for a Sustainable Marine Economy’.

In addition to discussing our ongoing research activities and possible future collaborations, we have been inviting participants to register their institutions to the EXCELLABUST Marine Robotics Database.

MaREI Wins at the Marine Industry Awards

5th July 2017

MaREI won the Excellence in Marine Research Award at the recently held Marine Industry Awards, held in Galway as a part of SeaFest 2017. The Award reflects the Centre’s contribution to excellence in Ireland’s maritime economy which, in 2016, showed a 23% increase in turnover, a 20% increase in gross value added (GVA) and a 10% increase in employment compared to 2014.

Professor Jerry Murphy, Director of MaREI said, ‘I am delighted to receive this award on behalf of the MaREI Centre. The Centre continues to grow and represents six institutes across Ireland, employs over 180 researchers and has over 45 industry partners. This latest success reflects the cutting edge and impactful research that we are carrying out across the Marine, Marine Renewable Energy and Renewable sectors.’

For more information, visit the Marine Research Awards 2017.

Oceans '17 MTS/IEEE

26th June 2017

Aoife and Satja, our PhD candidates, attended the Oceans'17 MTS/IEEE conference in Aberdeen, 19th-22nd June 2017. The conference was a great place to learn more on the state of the art technologies in Subsea Engineering and to discuss various projects and ideas, both existing and future. Aoife also held a 'Lagrangian Waverider and Wave Filtering System for use in ROV Control' presentation on Tuesday, 20th of June, in which she described her current research endeavors.

The Oceans '17 MTS/IEEE conference returned to Aberdeen, Scotland in June 2017, with special themes such as: Marine Renewables, Subsea Engineering, Operations, and Sensing, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Salvage, and many more.

For more information visit Oceans '17 MTS/IEEE website.

EMRA 2017

22nd May 2017

The 4th edition of the EMRA Workshop took place in Girona, 15th - 16th of May 2017. The EMRA 2017 was organised by University of Girona, Spain, under EU projects EXCELLABUST and STRONGMAR. It covered topics on marine robotics and its applications, and brought together a diverse range of speakers, from ongoing FP7/H2020 projects, industry, end users and stakeholders.

EMRA 2017 provided an excellent opportunity for networking, as it brought together academia and industry representatives from all around Europe. The interdisciplinary approach, presenting marine robotics and all its different applications was especially worthwhile for the exchange of ideas and the future development of marine robotics.

The next EMRA 2018 will be hosted by the MMRRC at the University of Limerick in Summer 2018. Dates and details will be posted on this site soon.

Visiting Lecturer Jakub Osmic

14th April 2017

A warm welcome to our visiting lecturer Dr. Jakub Osmić from University of Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Jakub chose to visit MMRRC at the University of Limerick as a part of his ERASMUS+ mobility programme. While staying here, Jakub will give a lecture series Modeling and Control of DC and Induction Motors and Application of Induction Motors on Emulation of Wind Turbines. Join us in the Main Building room B2-005, on Monday, 24th, and Tuesday, 25th of April, at 10am on both days.

The two lectures are as follows: on Monday, Jakub will discuss the Application of Induction motors on Emulation Wind Turbines, on Tuesday he will give an overview of Modelling and Control of DC and Induction Motors.

For more info on Jakub check his biography here.


MaRINET2 1st Access Call

MaRINET2 1st Access Call

10th April 2017

The MaRINET2 1st Access Call opened up on 10th of April 2017. 57 top-level research facilities and infrastructures, across 13 European countries, including our own brand new, light work class, MRE ROV, could be at your disposal if you apply for the access grant. We are looking forward to providing marine energy companies, entrepreneurs, start-ups, and researchers, with fully-funded access to marine energy experts and the world's leading wave, tidal and offshore-wind test facilities and infrastructure.

All information on application process can be found on the MaRINET2 website. If you are interested in our MRE ROV, do not hesitate to contact Ger Dooly or Daniel Toal. Good luck with your application!

Prof Nikola Miskovic's visit to MMRRC

22th March 2017

During his visit to the Univeristy of Limerick and the Mobile & Marine Robotics Reseach Centre, 17th - 22nd March 2017, Prof Nikola Miskovic, a long term collaborator of MMRRC, participated in several meetings with Prof Daniel Toal, Dr Gerard Dooly, Dr Edin Omeridic, and other MMRRC members to present the most recent activities of the H2020 project EXCELLABUST, that we are collaborating on, and to discuss the future collaborations between MMRRC and LABUST.

RAMSES Training Course

20th March 2017

Our researchers, Stefano and Petar, attended a 2 days training course in Aberdeen, on 14th and 15th March 2017. The AMSES Sparse-LBL training course, provided by iXblue, was a great way to learn all about RAMSES Sparse-LBL technology, and our researchers are now certified to work with RAMSES underwater LBL acoustic localisation system.

We are looking forward to putting their newly acquired knowledge to good use here in our research centre!

Drone & Tech Expo Ireland

13th March 2017

The Drone & Tech Expo Ireland took place in Dublin this weekend, 10-12 March 2017. We have spent those three exciting days showcasing our latest research and technologies, and meeting interesting and interested individuals and company representatives from Ireland and beyond.

The Drone & Tech Expo, supported by the Unmanned Aircraft Association of Ireland (UAAI) and IAA, is not only one of the two main drone events in Ireland, but also the only one targeting both professionals and general public. The event only grew more popular after its first edition in 2016, which attracted over 50 exhibitors, and 2000 visitors. Both the drone community and the general public made this event a great success, and we are looking forward to the next edition!

Dingle IOThon

7th March 2017

Our researchers: Joseph Coleman, David Adley, and Stefano Pierantozzi; and OFSRC's researcher Avijit Mathur, participated in the Dingle IOThon, that took place at the Dingle Skellig Hotel, from 3rd to 5th March 2017.

The Dingle IOThon was an event focused on harnessing a spirit of playful cleverness while exploring the challenges and opportunities in which the Internet of Things (IOT) played an important part. The main objective of the event was to produce ideas, solutions and start-up company opportunities. That was possible due to a number of people with diverse backgrounds: business people, engineers, technologists, academics, trades' people, crafts' people, public servants, entrepreneurs, students, and a broad spectrum of artists.

All the attendees participated in a variety of group activities and exercises, so that everyone's voice could be heard, rather than listening to a large number of presentations. The collective input from the following themes: smart agriculture, retail, maritime, education & learning, and many more; was harvested and we are looking forward to putting all the ideas, new areas of research and new business opportunities to test in the newly established Dingle Creativity and Innovation Hub.

AWESCO Mid Term Meeeting

AWESCO group photo

8th February 2017

The AWESCO Mid Term Review Meeting took place in Leuven on 8th Feb 2017. AWESCO, Airborne Wind Energy System Modelling, Control, and Optimisation, is an interdisciplinary doctoral training network, funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (MSCA), with the idea of replacing the most efficient part of a conventional wind turbine, the tip of the rotor blade, by a fast flying, high efficiency kite.

As partners in the project, Mahdi Ebrahimi Salari, Early Stage Researcher, and MMRRC researchers Daniel Toal and Joseph Coleman, attended the meeting where they discussed and evaluated the progress of the network. Mahdi also presented his project under the AWESCO and the results achieved so far.

MMRRC getting a new ROV

17th January 2017

We are very proud to announce we have purchased a new Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV), and associated launch and recovery systems, under a MaREI Science Foundation Ireland infrastructure grant (15/RI/3232). The Sub-Atlantic Comanche 2000 m Light Weight Work Class ROV will be supplied in March 2017 by the Forum Energy Technologies Inc., who won an order to supply UL with an ROV to support our subsea inspection and intervention work on renewable energy infrastructure.

The Comanche will enable us to operate in the high energy environment, typical to offshore renewable industry conditions, and unsuitable for humans to operate in. The fully equipped ROV will be housed at the Limerick Docks where we will do our experiments, tests and demonstrations. It will also be mobilised on vessels at other ports of Ireland, for offshore work at wind, tidal and wave energy test sites and farms.

For more info, take a look at the news article on the Marine Technology News.


Invited Talk at FER, Zagreb

16th January 2017

Our researchers Dr. Edin Omerdic and Dr. Gerard Dooly are traveling to Croatia where Gerard was invited to give a talk on our recent field trials in Portroe: ‘Bringing Smart Underwater Manipulators & Vision to Work-Class ROVs: Recent Field Trials’. The talk will take place on Wednesday, 18th January 2017, starting at 9am, at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing (FER), Zagreb. Meanwhile, Edin, a work package leader for the H2020 project ‘EXCELLABUST - Excelling LABUST in marine robotics’ will be attending the EXCELLABUST project meeting.


Work-Class ROV Trials Portroe

13th January 2017

The Mobile & Marine Robotics Research Centre (MMRRC) and the Marine Institute participated in the Work Class ROV trials, granted earlier this year as a part of the Marine Institute - 2016 Shiptime Programme. The trials were held near Portroe, in a disused quarry, from 21 - 25 November 2016. The quarry, now flooded by a freshwater spring, offers great visibility, a variety of depths, and an interesting assortment of sunken things, such as the old quarry workings, and a bar with taps and mannequins around it.

MMRRC researchers: Gerard Dooly, Satja Sivcev, Matija Rossi, and Petar Trslic; successfully tested various parts of research projects we are currently developing in MMRRC: an autonomous underwater robotic arm, which helps human ROV pilots to perform challenging tasks by using autonomous robotic systems, and a real-time 3D reconstruction algorithm, using 2 sonars and a number of cameras to reconstruct the underwater scene and aid in the navigation of the robots in the scene.

Enjoy a short snippet from the trials, an uncommon underwater scene, and take a look at some more MMRRC videos here!

MMRRC and OFSRC Annual Colloquium 2016

20th December 2016

The Mobile & Marine Robotics Research Centre (MMRRC) and the Optical Fibre Sensors Research Centre (OFSRC), from the Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering (ECE) held a joint Annual Progression Colloquium on the 19th December 2016. The postgraduate students from both centres presented their research work completed in 2016 and their plans in the oncoming 2017. After each presentations, the attendees discussed the project and possible future collaborations.

Both centres have a true international reputation and are commited to the UL's strategic plan and Internationalisation Goal, as can be seen from a wide cultural and national diversity in the students coming from: Bosnia, China, Croatia, Germany, India, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Libia, Pakistan, Serbia, and Taiwan.

Community Festival of Science 2016

25th November 2016

As a part of MaREI centre, a number of MMRRC researchers and staff, participated in the Community Festival of Science in Cork. It was a closing event of the Cork Science Festival and Science Week, and it took place at the Neptune Stadium, on Sunday, 20th November. An impressive number of children, parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles, came and met the ordinary people using science everyday to do extraordinary things.

Cork Science Festival is a week long celebration of Science engagement supported by Science Foundation Ireland each November, and we are proud to have participated in the event designed to encourage children to be interested in science.


25th November 2016

Our Dr. Edin Omerdic presented his paper ‘User Interface for Interaction with Heterogeneous Vehicles for Cyber-Physical Systems’ at the 14th International Conference on Control, Automation, Robotics and Vision, ICARCV 2016.

The ICARCV has a history of more than 26 years, covering topics such as control, automation, robotics and computer vision, as it focuses both on theory and applications. this year, the ICARCV 2016, was held in Phuket, Thailand from 13th - 15th November 2016.


UL Open Days 2016

27th October 2016

University of Limerick hosted an Open Days 2016 event on 20th and 21st October 2016. The Department of Electronic & Computer Engineering introduced the prospective students to the many robotics and communications undergraduate courses available within the ECE Department, while the MMRRC researchers presented some of our ongoing research activities, and demonstrated the control systems for underwater robots and the head tracking camera system used to assist ROV pilots, which both drew much attention from the future UL students.

The UL Open Days are a great opportunity for prospective students to learn about the UL experience, inform themselves on the available courses, visit many of the UL research labs, talk to the current students, lecturers and researchers, and to find out more about the student support services available at UL. This October, more than 12,000 prospective students, their parents, and teachers visited UL, as well as over 200 schools across the 26 counties.

The next UL Open Day event will be held on the 14th of January 2017. For more information visit the University of Limerick and the UL Open Days 2016 websites.


Breaking the Surface 2016 Workshop

20th October 2016

MMRRC researchers and PhD students participated in Breaking the Surface 2016 Workshop held in Biograd na Moru, Croatia, from 2nd - 9th of October 2016. Breaking the Surface is a meeting place of experts and students of marine control engineering and signal processing, and the marine robotics application areas in various types of ocean science. The multidisciplinary approach serves to gather the experts from marine robotics and all of the various users of the underwater robotics technologies, such as: marine biology, maritime security, nautical archaeology, oceanology and many more.

We have contributed to the diversity of topics by inviting the three Irish speakers: Francis Flannery, Cormac Gebruers and Mark Jessopp. Mark talked about the ‘Co-existence of top marine predators and humans....and the role of technology’, Cormac discussed and challenged the attendees with his talk on ‘Marine Robotics Applications in Humanitarian, Search & Rescue and Civilian Focussed Security Operations – what might the future hold?’ and Francis gave an overview of ‘Bootstrapping SonarSim: A Start-up Journey’ during the Innovation Tuesday Section. Ours Dan Toal and Edin Omerdic gave, respectively, a talk on ‘Robotics for challenging ocean intervention in marine renewable energy and other applications’, and a hands-on demonstration on ‘Thruster control using LabVIEW real-rime & FPGA graphical programming’.

For more information visit the Breaking the Surface website.


CAMS 2016

22nd September 2016

We attended the 10th IFAC Conference on Control Applications in Marine Systems (CAMS 2016). The conference took place in Trondheim, Norway, from 13th to 16th September 2016. Our Dr. Edin Omerdic gave a talk on Measurement of Network Latency in Remote Presence Applications.

The conference provided an excellent opportunity for the presentation and discussion of research results and development in the areas of control applications for surface & underwater vessels, floating & sub-sea structures, and other marine systems. Apart from that, it also served as a meeting place for all interested in marine technologies to share ideas, experiences, and new perspectives resulting from recent innovation.

For more information visit the CAMS 2016 website.


Dr. Edin Omerdic visited FET, University of Tuzla

11th August 2016

Dr. Edin Omerdic visited University of Tuzla as a part of Erasmus+ staff exchange programme this July. During the 2 week exchange, Edin established stronger collaboration links between researchers at UL and FET (Faculty of Electrical Engineering Tuzla). In lectures on Marine Technologies for Challenging Off-Shore Applications, Controll Allocation & Fault Tolerant Control, and User Interaction Interface & remote Presence; and a hands-on tutorial on ROV Control Systems, Edin shared theoretical and practical knowledge with students and staff of the FET in the effort to increase both UL's and FET's scientific excellence and innovation capacity in marine robotics field.


25th July 2016

We attended a training event organized by the Institute for Research of Intelligent Systems for Automation - ISSIA, National Research Council of Italy - CNR in Genova, Italy, under the EXCELLABUST project. The event lasted for 3 days, from 18th to 20th of June 2016, and was divided in two main parts. The first day, 19th of June, Silvia Cella, Alessia Naso, and Raffaella Beroldo held an Innovation Management Training on the topic "Patent: A tool to promote (basic fundamentals)". The following two days, 19th and 20th of June, the attendees participated in a number of hands-on workshops focused on building an Unmanned Marine Vehicle and on cooperative control and perception for heterogeneous Unmanned Marine Vehicles.

The training event was attended by researchers and project managers form EXCELLABUST project partners' institutions.

See more info on the EXCELLABUST site.


EMRA 2016

20th June 2016

We attended the 3rd EMRA 2016 workshop on EU funded marine robotics research was organized by the Newcastle University's School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering on 14th and 15th June 2016. The workshop, held under EU projects CADDY and EXCELLABUST, was a great opportunity for the marine robotics stakeholders to meet and discuss the ongoing H2020 and industry project, the end users' needs, to share ideas, and network.

MMRRC's Dr. Edin Omerdic gave a talk on OceanRINGS: Current State of Development and Future Work.

The day after the EMRA workshop, on 16th of June, an EXCELLABUST project meeting took place. Apart from progress reporting, the main topic was organization of the upcoming Breaking the Surface 2016 workshop. We are hoping to see you on the BtS workshop in Biograd na Moru, Croatia, from 2nd to 9th October 2016.


First AWESCO Summer School

9th June 2016

University of Limerick and MMRRC are happy to host the first AWESCO Summer School at UL from 7-14 June 2016. AWESCO Early Stage Researchers and Research Associates have successfully presented their research projects and had stimulating discussions about further development and possible collaborations. The guest speakers: Dr. Hammad Ahmad from GE Renewable Energy and Prof. Moritz Diehl from the University of Freiburg shared their extensive knowledge with the researchers in the last few days.

In the following days we are expecting more experts to talk about a variety of topics concerning Airborne Wind Energy (AWE), as well as Technical Writing for Engineers.

For more information visit the Summer School website.

First AWESCO Summer School

3rd June 2016

The first AWESCO Summer School will be held at the University of Limerick, starting on the 7th of June 2016. We are delighted to welcome AWESCO Early Stage Researchers and their supervisors, guest students and a number of guest speakers that will enrich this event with their expertise in a variety of topics relating to airborne wind energy.

For more information visit the Summer School website.

Pint of Science

26th May 2016

Pint of Science is an event where scientist and engineers ditch the lab coats and deliver their research tales in a fun, engaging and approachable way by bringing them to the local pub. Some of the most interesting and knowledgeable scientists and engineers gathered in Limerick on the 25th of May 2016 where people were invited to sit back, listen and engage with the presenters over a pint. One of the engineers presenting was MMRRC's Dr. Joseph Coleman with the talk titled 'Marine robotics: explorers and workhorses of our oceans'.

Find out more on Pint of Science by visiting their website.

Announced €1m Boost for Geology Research

21st March 2016

MMRRC at the University of Limerick is receiving a part of the €1m boost for Geology Research by the Geological Survey of Ireland in the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources as part of the 2015/2016 GSI Geoscience Research Short Call. Two MMRRC's granted projects, both submitted by Dr. Toal, can be found here.

41 small scale projects, which will be of less then one year in duration, will receive funding in 2016. Mr Koen Verbruggen, Director of the Geological Survey of Ireland, stated GSI is funding a very wide range of applied projects, from using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for coastal mapping to landslide monitoring and 3D modelling of shipwrecks. The short turnaround of the projects means the impacts for society will occur quickly, Mr. Verbruggen added.

The funding was available to both SME and academic partners which has increased the participation of industry in research activities and seen a welcomed increase between the public and private sector said GSI Research Manager Dr. Aoife Braiden.

For more information visit GSI website.

LEWIS Symposium

15th March 2016

Global leaders in the field of marine renewable energy gathered on the 29th of February in Cork for a two day symposium in honour of the 'father of ocean energy', Prof. Tony Lewis. The LEWIS Symposium was hosted by MaREI, the Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy, and has assembled a fantastic line of speakers, one of which was MMRRC's Dr. Gerard Dooly.

Gerard gave a talk on the use of smart robotic systems for inspection, monitoring and intervention of marine renewable energy farms offshore. The talk titled ‘Remote Presence / Challenges for remote inspection, monitoring and intervention in MRE’ can be watched here (starting at 1:49:20) and the presentation slides can be found here.

For more information on the symposium take a look at the agenda.

AWESCO Kick-Off Week

10th March 2016

The AWESCO project (Airborne Wind Energy Systems Modelling, Control and Optimisation) has organized the "AWESCO Kick-Off Week" in Freiburg, Germany from 29th of February to 4th of March 2016. The participants included AWESCO partners, early stage researchers and associate researchers.

The aim of the week was to allow all members of the AWESCO network to meet and discuss the upcoming research projects. Furthermore, two courses were offered to the early-stage-researchers to aid in their research and professional development.

More information about the event can be found here.

7th Ocean Energy Industry Forum 2016

18th Februray 2016

The Marine Renewables Industry Association (MRIA) has organized the 7th Ocean Energy Industry Forum 2016 in Ocean Energy: Developments & Plans on the 12th of February 2016. The event was sponsored by Arthur Cox and held in Dunlaoghaire, Ireland.

The Forum was organized in three sessions: Further policy and support steps in ocean energy, Technology Progress and MaREI – a Centre of Excellence for Marine and Renewable Energy. Dr. Joseph Coleman of Mobile nad Marine Robotics Research Centre, MMRRC, had a 5 minute snapshot talk where he discussed SFPC Limerick Docklands Project. The project is categorized under the MaREI Platform P5 - Observation, Monitoring & Operations. It's main object being the development of long endurance robotic systems for routine remote presence inspection of marine renewable energy (MRE) devices.

The presentation given by Dr. Coleman can be found here.

Robotics in Space, Underwater, Industry and the Law

17th February 2016

The event 'Robotics in Space, Underwater, Industry and the Law' jointly held by Engineers Ireland, Mechanical and Manufacturing Division and Institution of Mechanical Engineers has welcomed 4 speakers to Engineers Ireland, Clyde Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin on the 2nd of February 2016.

The speakers showcased some of their work in the areas of robotics applied in space (David McKeown of UCD), underwater systems (Daniel Toal Chartered Engineer of UL), industrial applications (Colin Dullaghan from ABB) and how robotics are affected by law (Laura Keogh of Legal Services at Philip Lee Solicitors). The MMRRC's Assoc. Prof. Dr. Daniel Toal discussed the importance of remote presence as offshore operations are often prohibitively expensive and remotely controlled robots could be used for monitoring, inspecting, repairing and maintaining the future marine renewable energy farms.

The talks were well received by listeners, both at the event and online. If you missed the talks, they can be found here.


28th January 2016

A new initiative to highlight the achievements of Irish researchers was launched at Trinity College Dublin by Mr. Damien English TD, Minster for Skills, Research and Innovation. #LoveIrishResearch – an initiative of the Irish Research Council – will run throughout 2016 with the aim of increasing public awareness of the important research conducted in higher education institutions throughout the country.

Ireland has a treasure trove of creative and innovative individuals who are conducting research, many of which are based in our higher education institutions. Their research is contributing to the understanding of our world and to national and global progress. So, in 2016, the Irish Research Council is spearheading an initiative to better share the work of our researchers and develop greater public interest and knowledge of what is happening in research in Ireland.

The Mobile & Marine Robotics Research Center, MMRRC, has had a number of projects funded by the Irish Research Council, most of them PhD research projects under the Irish Research Council Postgraduate Enterprise Partnership Scheme. Some of the projects are 'Smart Event Triggered Ocean Monitoring Platform' (University of Limerick in collaboration with International Smartocean Graduate Enterprise Initiative and Marine Institute), 'Parafoil Controller Design' (University of Limerick in collaboration with Bord Gáis Éireann) and 'A Secure Agile Wireless Sensor Network for Coastal Incident Monitoring' (University of Limerick in collaboration with Intel Ireland Ltd).

MMRRC received ROV time from 2016 Shiptime programme

25th January 2016

MMRRC applied for a competition held by the Marine Institute - 2016 Shiptime programme. The proposal “Marine Renewable Energy Intervention ROV subsystems testing” was highly ranked and received an allocation of ROV time.

A robotic arm equipped with the advanced remote pilot interface and the visual based algorithms with the camera system in the loop will be tested while mounted on the subsea ROV. The ROV with the arm is used in the observation and maintenance of marine renewable energy systems.

MaREI, MARINET awarded multi-million R&D grants

20th January 2016

Ireland's Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, through Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), has awarded multi-million funding for marine renewable energy research project to MaREI, MARINET and their university research partners. A total of 21 research projects will be supported through €28 million investment in research equipment and facilities initiative from various sectors.

As a part of MaREI, MMRRC at the University of Limerick was granted €1,955,742 to develop marine renewable energy remote operation vehicle (MRE-ROV) for challenging wave, tidal and wind conditions. The MRE-ROV, an all electric vehicle with advanced dynamic positioning and control capabilities, is a key piece of support infrastructure for the development and testing of wave and tidal energy converters and for research and development of technologies for inspection, repair and maintenance of MRE infrastructure in the challenging high energy offshore prevailing conditions at MRE farms.

MMRRC invited to give a talk at University of Zagreb

15th January 2016

MMRRC's Assoc. Prof. Dr. Daniel Toal and Dr. Edin Omerdić are invited to give a talk "Overview of research activities in Mobile & Marine Robotics Research Centre, University of Limerick" at the University of Zagreb.

Laboratory for Underwater Systems and Technologies (LABUST) at the University of Zagreb Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing in Croatia positioned itself in the last years as the regional leader in marine robotics. LABUST and MMRRC have been collaborating on a number of projects, among which is a new H2020 project "EXCELLABUST - Excelling LABUST in marine robotics."

MMRRC and OFSRC Annual Colloquium 2015

18th December 2015

The Optical Fiber Sensors Research Centre (www.ofsrc.ul.ie) and the Mobile & Marine Robotics Research Centre (www.mmrrc.ul.ie) from the Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering (www.ece.ul.ie) held the Annual Progression Colloquium. The postgraduate students presented their research work from 2015 and the plans for the coming year. The presentations were followed by individual discussions for each project and possible collaboration in the future work. After the colloquium the entire group went for a pleasant Christmas dinner where the members had the chance to get to know each others even better.

Both centres continuously demonstrate their commitment to the university's strategic plans and internationalisation goals, as well as enjoy an international reputation, for our students come from a variety of cultures and nationalities.

GKinect Energy unveiles OC1, tidal energy device

14th December 2015

GKinetic Energy Ltd, tidal energy company, has officialy launched its revolutionary tidal energy device, OC1, with a potential capacity to generate the most cost-efficient renewable energy on the market.

OC1 was deployed in late October at the Limerick Docks where trials have validated earlier tests, showing the device generating output levels well above the international industry standard.

The device's designer, Vincent McCormack, stated that the OC1's success is a result of excellent collaboration and support from SEAI, NUIG, Marei, DesignPro and SFPC. MMRRC was at the launch as a part of MaREI.

The Spanish Armada Heritage Project Meeting

1st December 2015

The MMRRC hosted a meeting to discuss the San Marcos Project, focused on the Spanish Armada shipwrecks. The San Marcos Project team and Doonbeg Adventures, our collaborators for 2016, were given a tour of the MMRRC's facilities and equipment.

The Spanish Armada was the largest land and sea invasion force at the time, a fleet of 130 ships assembled by the King Philip II of Spain in 1588. The Armada was to overthrow the Queen Elizabeth I of England and her Dutch allies by landing on the south coast of England.

However, at the Battle of Gravelines, where the Spanish were waiting for more troops to board on the ships, the English attacked and through a combination of guile, seamanship and luck break the Armada's formation. The Armada was saved from defeat by the favourable winds, but Medina Sidonia, the Commander of the Armada, realized they need to regroup and return at a later stage. With the English fleet blocking the Channel the Armada set sail for the long and dangerous route around the Scotland and alongside the Ireland's west coast. The favourable winds turned and the Armada was hit by one of the worst storms in history, the ships scattered and sunk alongside the west coast of Ireland. Less then half of the Armada returned safely to their home ports across Europe.

The Armada lost far more ships and men wrecked off Ireland than in battle with English fleet. The shipwrecks will be explored with the goal to raise public awareness, understanding and enjoyment of the critical role that the international Armada Campaign (1588 - 1603) played and the impact that the event had on European history and maritime heritage. Looking forward to going to the coast of West Clare with our collaborators in the New Year.

Marine Robotics Innovation Centre opened in Southampton

24th November 2015

Universities & Science Minister Jo Johnson officially opened a £3m centre to develop new technology for the emerging marine robotics sector.

Based at NERC's National Oceanography Centre (NOC) in Southampton, the Marine Robotics Innovation Centre has been operational since the summer of 2015, it was born out of the government's 'eight great technologies' funding initiative. The funding has built the innovation centre and provided capital investment for a range of underwater robotic equipment that can go further and deeper than most systems in commercial use. The new Marine Robotics Innovation Centre, where office and testing facilities are provided along with access to specialist instrumentation, will be a hub for businesses developing autonomous platforms, with novel sensors that will be used to cost-effectively capture data from the world's oceans.

The vision for the Marine Robotics Innovation Centre is to bring together world-class marine robotics technology capability (developed for scientific ocean exploration) with industry capabilities (mostly centres in numerous small technology businesses) to transfer marine robotics technology into a vast array of offshore applications for multiple uses in many maritime sectors.

Careers Fair in John The Baptist Community School

23rd November 2015

The University of Limerick and MMRRC were invited to participate in the Careers Fair organized by John The Baptist School in Hospital. The final year students showed great interest in the MMRRC and the University and we are hoping to welcome them to the University of Limerick soon!

Thanks to John The Baptist Community School for giving us the opportunity to talk to the students and their parents.