Five-hole probe for marine turbulence measurements

  • Young, Anna (PI)
  • Benson, Ian (Researcher)
  • Benson, Ian (Researcher)

Project: Research council

Project Details


The measurement of turbulence in the marine environment is of interest across several sectors, from climate science to yacht racing, but devices that take accurate measurements are expensive and fragile. In response to this problem, Dr Young has developed a new sensor based on aerospace techniques, which uses off-the-shelf electronic components to calculate flow speed and direction from pressure measurements – the Barnacle. The components making up the Barnacle cost under £1000, while existing probes retail for around £12,000 and have significant shortcomings. The new device was initially developed with tidal power site surveys in mind, but the potential applications are far broader. For example, a NERC-funded PhD studentship in collaboration with the British Antarctic Survey and the National Oceanographic Centre is currently being advertised. So far, a prototype version of the probe has been tested in a laboratory flume tank (EP/J010308/1) and at a tidal power site in Northern Ireland (EP/S000747/1). The next step is to explore options for larger-scale, commercial use of the device. The aim of the project is therefore to understand the commercial opportunities for the Barnacle turbulence probe.
Effective start/end date1/02/2230/06/22


  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water


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