Three of Scotland's east coast universities have formed a partnership to launch a new Offshore Renewables Institute (ORI) in Dundee.
The proposed institute will bring together experts from the University of Dundee, the University of Aberdeen and Robert Gordon University to develop and deliver solutions for the offshore wind industry in the North Sea and globally.
The ORI will provide consultancy, research, policy advice and professional development to the offshore renewables sector.
It will focus specifically on deployment and implementation, instead of technology and equipment.
University of Aberdeen's Paul Mitchell, who is the founding director of the institute, said it will allow experts to work together for a common goal.
"We need to look at the environmental impact of such large developments, the legal issues, safety, and how we can increase efficiency and reduce costs over the lifetime of a project," Mitchell added.
The partnership has identified four main areas of expertise that are specifically relevant to the offshore renewables industry, which include regulation, law and economics, environment and consents, design, fabrication and installation, and asset management.
University of Dundee principal and vice-chancellor Pete Downes said the development will complement work elsewhere in Scotland on turbine manufacturing, by focusing on areas that can deliver efficiency and cost reductions needed to drive the financial viability of the expanding industry.
Robert Gordon University principal and vice-chancellor Ferdinand von Prondzynski said: "We have strong links with the energy industry and with a renewed focus on offshore renewable energy we are well placed to deliver a globally recognised centre of excellence, which will highlight and secure Scotland's role in the next generation of energy production."
Image: The Offshore Renewables Institute will focus specifically on deployment and implementation. Photo: Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net.