We have two unique facilities available for testing oil and gas, water, process, marine renewable (wave, tidal and offshore wind) to meet energy industry needs. Alongside testing of high-speed marine vehicles (hull forms and appendages) and tidal turbine performance.

The facilities are normally available with a weeks notice with expert technicians on hand to assist with your testing project needs. Facilities are available by the hour and all quotations are confidential. 

Ocean systems test laboratory

Our ocean systems test laboratory is specifically designed for model testing at the early stage of marine renewable projects. 

The combination of wave and towing capabilities in addition to a team with expertise in hydrodynamics and turbomachinery enable us to cater for the particular needs of the marine renewable energy industry (wave, tidal and offshore wind). In particular we can offer: 

  • Dynamic response of support structures in wind-wave-current;
  • Turbine design and turbine performance assessment;
  • A bespoke design towing post capable of conducting resistance and stability tests in calm waters and waves;
  • Dynamic response tests of a ship/yacht in a seaway.

Our fully-instrumented horizontal and vertical axis tidal turbine test rigs can be deployed at very short notice on request.

The laboratory has undertaken consultancy with a wide range of clients from small companies to large corporations in experimental marine hydrodynamics. 

Process systems engineering laboratory

Cranfield’s impressive process systems engineering laboratory is equipped with industrial-scale single phase and multiphase flow facilities to study the behaviour of complex flows found in oil and gas production and process plants.

Our patented slug control system to minimise flow and pressure fluctuations in offshore production facilities has proved to extend field life and increase productivity. Field trials of our inferential slug control (ISC) invention in the North Sea and West Africa indicated an increase of 10% in oil production by the elimination of severe slugging through the usage of the inferential slugging control solution.

Subsea separation technology and multiphase flow metering helps oil companies to develop fields in increasingly challenging environments.

Companies we have worked with

  • Chevron
  • BP
  • Endress & Hauser
  • Neftemer
  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
  • European Union (EU)
  • Tidal Energy Ltd
  • Sustainable Marine Energy Ltd
  • Blue Tidal Energy Ltd
  • Schottel GmbH
  • Designcraft Ltd
  • Protean Wave Technology Ltd
  • ORECon Ltd
  • Dresser Rand / Peter Brotherhood Ltd
  • Tetrafloat Ltd
  • Keppel Offshore and Marine

Our testing facilities are suitable for hire and consultancy for all organisations from small-to-medium enterprises through to multinationals.

Testing and technical capability for the ocean systems laboratory

  • Testing (OS): high speed marine vehicles (hull forms and appendages) (in Haslar towing tank), tidal turbine performance (horizontal/vertical axis, fixed/variable pitch, open/ducted rotors), deployment of marine renewable energy devices, wave energy devices (PTO performance and support structure response in waves)
  • Wave and towing tank: length - 30m, width - 1.5m, max. depth - 1.5m
  • Regular and irregular waves
  • Max wave height: 280mm peak to trough; working frequency: 0.10 Hz to 1.1 Hz
  • Max towing carriage velocity: 3.5m/sec
  • Max towing carriage payload: 75kg
  • Max towing carriage drag: 200N
  • 6-component balances from 30N - 2N.m up to 2500N - 400N.m.
  • Vertical and horizontal axis tidal turbine rotor test rigs (motor and generator modes)
  • Tidal turbine rotor test rigs up to 600mm OD (x3 up to 188 rpm, 17.5 N.m)
  • Tidal turbine rotor test rigs up to 1200mm OD (x2 up to 300 rpm, 100 N.m)
  • Towing post for ships/yachts
  • Professional video recording (Full HD, 4K) equipment and editing facilities in house

Testing and technical capability for the process engineering laboratory

Testing (PSE) - three phase facility capable of delivering: 

  • 1400 cubic meters per hour - air
  • 140 cubic meters per hour of oil and water 
  • Choice of 2” and 4” 50m length flowline over an 11m rise 
  • Managed by a DeltaV plant management system from Emerson
  • High viscosity oil and sand transport loops
  • 2 x oil/water/air/sand loops
  • 4" inclinable air/water/sand loop for study of high-viscosity multiphase flows up to 7000cP oils and solids
  • 0.25m (internal diameter) flow loop 36m lth horizontal and 11.8m vertical
  • 2” loop terrain slugs and sand transport studies in both horizontal and undulating configurations 
  • Bespoke rig calculation, design, and fabrication management
  • Ultra High speed recording facility (up to 150kfps)
  • Advanced instrumentation, including electrical resistance and electrical capacitance tomography systems, wire mesh sensor system, remote microscopic imaging system with dual YAG laser illumination, particle size analysers, vector network analyser (5 GHz), fast sampling gamma densitometers, and other bench instruments including Karl Fisher water analyser, Brookfield viscometerand high precision programmable high-power DC supplies.