Accounting for biofouling through established protocols of quantification

Duration: 22 months (2017 - 2018)


The effects and magnitude of biofouling on offshore renewable energies (ORE) systems are largely unknown and represent a challenge to the sector in the design and maintenance phases likely to impact the final technology LCOE. It is therefore crucial to provide reliable input data needed for engineering based on studies coupling marine biology, marine metrology and structural design.


To develop biofouling characterisation and quantification methods for reliable design and maintenance of ORE systems.

Main achievements

  • Literature review and georeferencing of studies carried out on biofouling on French sea facades
  • Review of biofouling issues encountered for the various ORE technologies
  • Improvement of image analysis protocols for macrofouling integrating environmental measurement conditions
  • Recommendations for optimising the positioning of biological expertise
  • Specification of sensor requirements in terms of accuracy and reliability


ABIOP has identified the research needs that will enable better identification and management of the risks relating to the ORE components most sensitive to biofouling. Initial in situ measurements were also carried out to characterise biocolonisation in the Atlantic and Mediterranean from an engineering and environmental point of view. The necessary additional studies are being carried out within the framework of the ABIOP+ project.


ABIOP+ fact sheet (PDF)

Bibliographical atlas of biofouling (order online)

Partners and funding

This project was led by the Université de Nantes and France Energies Marines.

The total project budget was €544K.

This project received funding from France Energies Marines and its members and partners, as well as French State funding managed by the National Research Agency under the Investments for the Future Programme (ANR-10-IEED-0006-21).

Photo credit: Matthieu Sontag

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