OPIN - Ocean Power Innovation Network

Project Summary

The Ocean Power Innovation Network (OPIN) is a 3-year initiative, running from 2019 to 2021. The project has a total project budget of €2.6M, with €1.5M in financial support contributed by Interreg North West Europe from the European Research and Development Fund (ERDF).

OPIN is a cross-sectoral collaborative network that aims to accelerate the growth of the ocean energy sector and its supply chains across the partner regions of Ireland, the UK, Belgium, France, the Netherlands and Germany.

The basic premise of OPIN is to encourage both cross-sectoral and cross-regional collaboration for Offshore Renewable Energy SMEs. Cross-sectoral collaboration will bring already proven expertise, capabilities and products from other sectors into the ocean energy sector. This will help to reduce costs and accelerate technology development.

OPIN will also create a forum for collaboration and technology exchange across the partner regions. Companies from regions with ocean energy expertise will interact with potential collaborators from regions that are world leaders in other technology fields (offshore wind energy, oil and gas, aerospace, automotive and manufacturing). OPIN will provide a mechanism to transfer expertise between these regions, addressing the disparities in innovation and economic development across North West Europe.

The OPIN project will deliver supports to encourage both cross-sectoral and cross-regional collaboration. These supports will include:

  • Annual Symposiums: providing networking opportunities for OPIN members
  • Workshops and Masterclasses: to facilitate knowledge transfer between the project partner regions and to simulate the growth of the network.
  • Technology Assessment Processes (TAPs): assessments allowing companies to benchmark their technologies, map structured development paths and identify potential collaborators.
  • Collaborative Innovation Groups (CIGs): clusters of SMEs, working with research entities or large companies to solve problems identified as barriers to the ocean energy sector.

OPIN plans to support over 100 companies over the lifetime of the project. Additionally, the OPIN network will continue to grow and be a mechanism for the transfer of expertise beyond the life of the project.

For more information on the OPIN Project contact: OPIN@seai.ie

Project Partners

  • Scottish Enterprise

    50 Waterloo Street, Atrium Court
    G2 6HQ
    United Kingdom

    View partner details

  • Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult

    Hayle Marine Renewables Business Park Chi Gallos, North Quay
    TR27 4DD
    United Kingdom

    View partner details

  • Sirris, the collective centre of the technological industry

    935 Technologiepark

    View partner details

  • Ecole Centrale de Nantes

    1 rue de la Noë - BP 92101
    Nantes Cedex 3

    View partner details

  • Dutch Marine Energy Centre

    200 Bergerweg
    1817 MN

    View partner details

  • Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.

    59 Königstor

    View partner details

  • Invest Northern Ireland

    Bedford Square Bedford Street
    BT2 7ES
    United Kingdom

    View partner details

  • Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

    Wilton Park House Wilton Place
    Dublin 2
    D02 T228

    View partner details

Lead partner

Organisation Contact name Address Email Website
Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland Patricia Comiskey Wilton Park House Wilton Place
Dublin 2
D02 T228
Patricia.Comiskey@seai.ie https://www.seai.ie
Name Contact Name Email Country
Scottish Enterprise Karen Fraser Karen.Fraser@scotent.co.uk United Kingdom
Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult Simon Cheeseman simon.cheeseman@ore.catapult.org.uk United Kingdom
Sirris, the collective centre of the technological industry Bart Teerlinck bart.teerlinck@sirris.be Belgium
Ecole Centrale de Nantes Florent Vince florent.vince@weamec.fr France
Dutch Marine Energy Centre Justin den Hartog justin@dutchmarineenergy.com Netherlands
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V. Jochen Giebhardt Jochen.Giebhardt@iee.fraunhofer.de Germany
Invest Northern Ireland Brona Anderson brona.anderson@investni.com United Kingdom

Membership of the Ocean Power Innovation Network is completely free. To become a member of the OPIN Project fill in the Membership Form below and become eligible for all supports available through the project:


Innovation Supports

The OPIN Project provides 3 types of Innovations Supports to SMEs (Small or Medium sized Enterprises):


1. Technology Assessment Process (TAP) Support

OPIN partners will offer a high-level Technology Assessment Process (TAP) to SMEs which is free of charge. TAPs can look at either a whole system, a sub-system, or component level. TAPs are an evidence-based assessment conducted through an informal interview process.

During a TAP, OPIN partners will discuss with the technology developer design principles, opportunities to de-risk onward development and the route to commercialisation (product to market). The TAP is open to developers in the ocean sector who are looking to develop their technology and to developers in other sectors who are looking for opportunities to transfer technology into ocean energy.

For more information on applying for a TAP, please read the OPIN TAP Guidelines to Applicants document.

Applications must be submitted by email, using the OPIN TAP Application Form.

2. Collaborative Innovation Group (CIG) Support

OPIN will offer supports to SMEs to work collaboratively with other SMEs and/or research entities or large companies, to solve specific problems which are barriers to deployment of ocean energy. OPIN will offer support to a Collaborative Innovation Group (CIG) to work together to find a solution to the specific problem identified. CIGs should focus on challenges which cannot or have not been solved by one SME alone and aim to include complementary skills and expertise. The work carried out by a CIG is defined as a Collaborative Innovation Projects (CIPs).


  • The lead applicant for a CIG must meet be an SME.
  • The core membership of a CIG must involve a minimum of 2 SMEs.
  • Large companies and research organisations may also be members of the CIG, as long as at least 50% of members are SMEs.
  • CIGs should include members from at least 2 different OPIN regions.
  • Additional members can come from countries in the North-West Europe area, as defined by the Interreg North-West Europe Programme.
  • Associate members / observers from outside North West Europe may be involved with the CIG but cannot be direct beneficiaries of support. Associate members / observers can’t be included in a CIG at the expense of a potential CIG member from North West Europe.
  • CIGs are expected to consider cross-sector opportunities and preferably include at least one member from outside the ocean energy sector.

For more information on eligibility criteria for CIG Support please read the CIG Guideline to Applicants and Call for Proposals document. 


CIG Support Applications and Approval Timelines:

OPIN Supports can be applied for at any time. Application will be reviewed approximately every three months following the schedule below: 

  Application Deadline
OPIN Call 1 31/10/19
OPIN Call 2 31/01/20


Applications must be submitted by email, using the OPIN CIG Application Form.


3. Travel Support

Travel support is an amount, up to €500 per trip and a maximun of €2,000 per SME (inclusive of VAT), available to SMEs travelling abroad either:

  • To take part in an OPIN workshop or masterclass
  • To take part in a Collaborative Innovation Group meeting or activity

Travel Support is only available to SMEs registered in Ireland or the Scottish Enterprise region.

For more information on applying for a Travel Support please read the Travel Support Guidance to Applicants documents. 

Applications must be submitted by email, using the OPIN Travel Support Application Form.


All applications for support must be submitted by email, using the application forms provided in the sections above, to “OPIN@seai.ie using the subject heading “Innovation Support Application”.

Guidelines for Support:

To see the general guidelines explaining how SMEs from ocean energy and related sectors, located in an OPIN region, can apply for OPIN Innovation Support. please consult the following guidelines document: Innovation Support Scheme: General Guidelines for Applicants



OPIN Workshop: Cross-sector Collaboration between the Offshore and Ocean Energy Sectors

, Maritiem MuseumLeuvehaven 1, 3011 EA Rotterdam, Netherlands

Workshop to foster collaboration between the offshore sector and ocean energy technology companies DMEC (Dutch Marine Energy Centre) organizes together with IRO (Association of Dutch Suppliers in the Upstream Oil and Gas Industry and Offshore Renewable Industry) a workshop to identify collaboration opportunities between the offshore supply chain and ocean energy technology companies. Accelerated development of the ocean energy sector is linked with existing or new developments in other sectors, especially the closely related offshore sector. Synergies in joint technology developments, co-location (e.g. wave-wind farms), supply chain, and policies will be of great benefit to the success of both sectors. In this workshop, the ocean energy sector will pitch to an audience of organisations from the offshore sector.
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