(c) Neil Holmes - offshorewind


Mission Planning for Autonomous Vehicles in O&M

About this project

The UK is leading the world in the deployment of offshore wind energy and Hull is at the centre of the industry, with the largest companies in the sector based in the region (Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and Ørsted). The University of Hull is working with these companies and other leading organisations to support the development of the industry through Aura.

The rapid development of the offshore wind (OSW) industry in UK waters has opened up many challenges and opportunities for research and innovation.

The rapid development of the offshore wind (OSW) industry in UK waters has opened up many challenges and opportunities for research and innovation. This is particularly true of Operations and Maintenance (O&M) where novel approaches are required, and where many innovation opportunities exist. O&M accounts for 20-30% of the lifetime cost of electricity generated from OSW and is a priority within the Industrial Strategy Green Paper and for funding agencies. To exploit these opportunities for research funding, the University of Hull has recently agreed with the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (OREC) to establish a joint Offshore Wind Operations and Maintenance Centre of Excellence (O&M CE) with the purpose of supporting innovation to help reduce the lifetime cost of electricity and promote the UK supply chain. The Centre of Excellence will develop a portfolio of activities ranging from early stage research to nearer market development based around a series of roadmaps developed in collaboration with the OSW industry. Through discussion with OREC, six areas of focus have been identified: Human free O&M, Human factors in O&M, Data driven O&M decision making, Offshore logistics, planning and risk, Lifetime asset management and Whole life supply chain modelling. The recently awarded PhD cluster of 4 scholarships will conduct early stage research addressing these six priority areas, which will feed a pipeline of innovation that ensures the long term sustainability of the Centre of Excellence.

The successful candidate will be based in the appropriate academic school but will benefit from opportunities to collaborate with AURA, the O&M CE, and both of the Energy and Environment and the Logistics Institutes.

Mission Planning for Autonomous Vehicles in O&M

Minimizing the need for human intervention in offshore maintenance is a key route to maximizing the potential, and minimizing the cost, for offshore low-carbon generation. This PhD will investigate best-suited optimization methodology to develop decision support system for mission planning of autonomous vehicles in operations and maintenance for offshore wind. The proposed system will utilize sensor data to facilitate integrated maintenance supply chain planning i.e. the number of parts in the warehouse, logistics, number of drones and its planning and scheduling in a timely and cost-effective way. 


If you have any queries, please email contact Prof Amar Ramudhin or Prof Nishikant Mishra.

Next steps


To celebrate the University's research successes, the University of Hull is offering a full-time UK/EU PhD Scholarship or International Fees Bursary.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have aMaster degree in Operations Research, Computer Science, Industrial Engineering or related area.

Applicants should have at least a 2.1 undergraduate degree or Master’s degree in the disciplines noted above, together with relevant research experience.

How to apply

Applications for scholarship consideration at the University of Hull should be made through the Postgraduate Application system.

On the second page of your application, please select “Graduate Scholarship” as the type of scholarship you are applying for. 

Applicants are strongly encouraged to first identify and contact a potential supervisor.

Application deadline: Monday 19 February