Global leaders in the field of marine renewable energy convened in Cork on the 29th February to attend a 2-day symposium in honour of the ‘father of ocean energy’, Professor Tony Lewis. The Lewis Symposium, hosted by the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy, was held in recognition of the significant contributions made by Professor Tony Lewis to the field of Ocean Energy. RTE’s maritime radio programme “Seascapes” covered the event in two episodes. Please see links below to listen:
“The Lewis Symposium is a celebration of a man who has dedicated his entire career to marine renewable energy. Professor Lewis has been one of the most active members of the Ocean Energy community for the past 4 decades. Through his teaching, research, industrial and ambassadorial roles he has become a great influencer in the Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) sector – which is why so many of his contemporaries have travelled to Cork for this event honouring him,” said Prof Jerry Murphy, Director MaREI.
“His legacy includes the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy, which has over 130 researchers across 6 institutions working with 45 industry partners, and the Lir National Ocean Test Facility located in the new world-class Beaufort Building,” he added. “Tony saw the potential of our marine resource before many others and was instrumental in developing the MRE sector here.”
Speaking at The Lewis Symposium, Professor Tony Lewis, added: “Over the course of my career I have been privileged to have worked with people from all over the world researching and making real progress in the marine renewable energy sector. I am honoured that so many of them have travelled to Cork to celebrate what we have achieved so far,”
“With a sea to land ratio of over 10:1, Ireland is one of the best locations in terms of marine renewable energy resources, but it is only in the last 10 years that we have started to get serious about the potential of marine renewable energy. I am honoured to have played a part in that and I look forward to the continued collaboration with my colleagues in Ireland and across the world,” he added.
As a result of his achievements Professor Lewis has recently been awarded Professor Emeritus status in University College Cork.
Speakers and attendees were treated to a tour of the world-class UCC Beaufort Building which houses the MaREI Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy and the LIR National Ocean Test Facility. The building was officially opened in July 2015, representing an investment of €15.2 million from the Irish State and private investment. The Building covers some 4,700m2 on five floors and has provision for 135 researchers and support staff in offices and across a suite of state-of-the-art test tanks and dedicated workshops.
The Beaufort Building, located adjacent to the National Maritime College of Ireland, is a major extension of UCC’s Environmental Research Institute (ERI). MaREI and the Lir National Ocean Test Facility are part of the IMERC Cluster, a strategic initiative by UCC, Cork Institute of Technology and the Irish Naval Service which has been successful in promoting Ireland as the place to invest in the maritime and energy sectors.