Lead Organisation Ecole Centrale de Nantes
Country France
Type Wave, Floating Wind
  • Type of Testing Wave, Floating Wind
    Year Established 2007
    Temperate/Tropical Temperate
    Commercial/Array/Full scale/Scale Commercial, Array, Full scale, Scale
    Development Status Operational


    Using the well-known expertise of Centrale Nantes in the scope of marine renewable energy, the strategy consists in building up a continuous and pragmatic approach to the testing of technologies, and offers the corresponding facilities and services from the initial proof of concept to the large scale verification of prototypes at sea.
    SEM-REV is the first French site for multi-technology offshore testing that is connected to the grid. It comprises:
    • A 1km2 designated maritime zone, 20km off the coast from Le Croisic, fully equipped to measure sea and weather conditions (wind, swell and local parameters) and clearly marked out by cardinal buoys.
    • Electric infrastructure to connect the system to the Enedis medium-voltage network via an 8MW 25km-long cable
    • A hub enabling the simultaneous connection of three machines
    • A research centre, located at Penn-Avel, to receive and analyse data and control the test devices -staffed by a dozen researchers and engineers.
    Since 2018, SEM-REV hosts the first large scale Floating Wind turbine, grid connected, in France: FLOATGEN.
  • Number of Berths 3
    Water Depth 35m
    Min Water Depth (m)
    Max Water Depth (m)
    Avg Water Depth (m) 35
    Annual mean significant wave height 12m
    Maximum recorded wave height
    Mean (averaged current speed) 0.7 m/s
    Maximum current speed
    Maximum tidal range 6.2 m
    Mean wind speed 7.5 m/s
    Max wind speed
    Seabed type Sand
    Total test area (km2) 1
    Distance to land 10 nm
    Grid connected Y
    Grid connection capacity 8 MW
    Rated export capacity and connection 8MW
    Proximity to nearest harbour (km) 20 nm from St Nazaire harbour (major shipyard), 10nm for smaller harbour (la Turballe)
  • Demonstration Projects

    R&D Projects


    More info here on facilities
    And here on equipment
    The onshore research center is located in Penn Avel Park, on the coast, and belongs to the Coastal Reserve. The research center:
    • Has offices for the SEM-REV team and industrial partners who are carrying out tests
    • Has a workshop
    • Receives oceanographic and meteorological data measured at sea
    The export cable connects the SEM-REV sea test site to the coastline in the electrical substation. The electrical substation is also connected to ENEDIS (French distribution system operator) network.
    • The electrical substation is located approximately 750 m from the onshore research center
    • It enables modification of the electrical current characteristics produced by MRE devices on the SEM-REV sea test site to make them compatible with ENEDIS network characteristics
    • A 20kV-8MVA and 24 optical fibers cable run to the middle of the offshore test site. It is connected to a submarine electrical station called Hub
    • It is a submarine electrical station (Hub) enabling three devices to be connected simultaneously (WEC or FOWT).
    ECN has setup its own operational SCADA, with a public version available here:

    Equipment available to support site deployments
    The site is equipped with oceanographic and meteorological monitoring tools (2 wave buoys, 1 ADCP, Wind sensors on site and in the site vicinity). More recently ECN acquired a scanning LiDAR, an innovative measuring device to characterize wind and atmosphere. It will be used for marine renewable energy (MRE), urban atmosphere and air quality applications
    And ECN has managed many EIA surveys over the past 10years. Some examples:

    Services of test programmes offered on site

    Benefitting from Centrale Nantes’ well known scientific expertise, the test site can benefit from a wide range of R&D support, from very low TRL (proof of concept) through tank testing at ECN’s facilities up to sea testing with SEMREV (TRL7-8). Regarding the test site specifically, our main missions are:
    Cost Reduction for Marine Renewables
    • Support the development monitoring methods (mechanical, thermal, electrical, environmental)
    • test sensors and methods at small scale (in a wave tank or on a small buoy)
    • Review installation and operation procedures
    • Develop used case for farm application (STATIONIS software, TPL evaluation)
    Public acceptance:
    • Environmental impact assessment (acoustics, stress on marine species…)
    • Marine Growth measurements and modelling
    • Local development of smart grids and Marine Renewables integration in the national grid
    • Technology accelerator
    • Demonstration of innovative designs
    • Testing subsystems and enabling technologies in real environment

    Key supply chain companies in the region

    Marine solutions (such as ALMA, Atlantique scaphandre, Naval Energies, Mojo maritime,) a major French Shipyard (Chantiers de l’Atlantique) Utilities (EDF) and expert consulting companies (Innosea, Dice,…) - skills directory:

    The regional supply chain is key in the Region Pays de la Loire (were SEM-REV is located). A regional community (WEAMEC) federates the different actors, among which a wide variety of industrial actors (ref. website above)