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History of standards development at EMEC

We have coordinated the development of 12 industry guidelines, developed by a working group representing a true cross-section of the marine energy industry. Six of the guidelines are being progressed for global adoption as the first international standards for marine energy.

Our initial involvement within this field began back in 2004 when the first draft standard ‘Performance of Wave Energy Converter Systems in the Open Sea’ was launched. This established how to characterise an area of the sea in terms of its wave energy levels and use this, along with electrical power measurement, to assess device performance. This meant that we could test devices using a uniform methodology to ensure consistency and stated accuracy in the measurement and analysis of the performance of wave energy conversion systems.

The standards project was led by John Griffiths, a current Associate of EMEC and former non-Executive Director of EMEC, who has been closely involved in the design and development of the our facilities since inception.

The process of standards drafting for the marine renewable energy industry was independently assessed by The Environment Council – an independent organisation that encourages and trains companies and others in stakeholder engagement. The Environment Council observed the main workshops, distributed questionnaires to the delegates and contacted individuals from the marine energy industry to acquire feedback on stakeholder engagement.

One of the key steps in this process has been to engage the industry and make sure that wide consultation takes place on the documents. This has included colleagues throughout Europe through the International Energy Agency Group on Ocean Energy Systems (IEA-OES).

March 2014: Review of marine renewables standards workshop

In March 2014, EMEC, in collaboration with the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (ORE Catapult), facilitated a workshop to review the existing suite of EMEC standards and identify areas where new standards require to be developed.

The report from the workshop is available to download here: Review of Standards for Marine Renewables (Wave & Tidal)

Further details on the workshop are available here: EMEC Marine Renewables Standards Workshop, March 2014

For an introduction to some of the benefits of standardisation and the process of producing standards please visit the website of BSI British Standards.

EMEC is currently supporting the development of standards for the Marine Energy industry through its work in the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), Technical Committee (TC) 114: Marine Energy – Wave and Tidal Energy Converters.







Aquamarine Power


Atlantis Resources Corporation



Naval Group

Naval Group


Open Hydro


Orbital Marine




ScottishPower Renewables



Sustainable Marine Energy

Sustainable Marine Energy


Voith Hydro


Wello Oy

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