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Professor plays key role in £220m project for UK’s offshore wind sector

2nd January 2018

Professor Yu Xiong, of Newcastle Business School at Northumbria University, has been instrumental in helping to forge a £220m UK-China offshore wind collaboration.

Professor Xiong advises the UK’s Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (ORE Catapult), and helped to develop the programme of offshore wind technology co-operation between the two nations.

The research and development collaboration agreement between Tsinghua University Science Park (Tus Park) and ORE catapult was signed during a visit to Beijing by the UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond and Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark. 

With ambitious targets to generate 20% of its energy from low-carbon sources by 2030, China’s rapidly growing offshore wind market is projected to be among the largest in the world.

Under the agreement, the companies will:

  • Establish a UK-China Technology Growth Accelerator to boost UK SME technology innovation and deployment in the Chinese offshore wind market;
  • Collaborate on the development of the Tus Offshore Wind Science Park and 500MW demonstrator in Shandong Province, incorporating 10-15% UK content;
  • Create joint applied research projects with high potential companies and leading UK and Chinese academic institutions.

The 10-15% UK technology content in Tus’ 500MW project, being delivered in close collaboration with the Dongying City Government, is estimated to be worth around £220m to UK companies and universities.

Professor Xiong said: “I have been working with the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult to devise a model for UK technology to access global markets - connecting with China is very important, from both funding and market perspectives. I am glad to see the endorsement from Rt Hon Greg Clark to support this initiative.”

“Tus Park is the largest innovation commercialisation group in China, with £26 billion assets, and is affiliated with the best university in China, Tsinghua University” Professor Xiong added.   

ORE Catapult's Technical Bid Manager, James Battensby, said: “Professor Xiong played a critical role in helping to form the partnership between ORE Catapult and Tus and remains a key part of the project team going forwards in developing collaborative research between the UK and China.”

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