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Vi Maris Award 2022

Vi Maris - The OEE Industry Award

The OEE industry award Vi Maris (Force of the sea) recognises excellence in the ocean energy industry. The award acknowledges individuals or organisations who have made an outstanding contribution to the ocean energy sector.

The winner is selected by a subcommittee of the Ocean Energy Europe board, who have extensive experience of the sector and who are not affiliated to a particular company. This year’s award will be presented during the ICOE-OEE 2022 event.  

The 2022 award nominees are:

  • WINNER: Britta Schaffmeister, DMEC
  • CalWave
  • Henry Jeffrey, University of Edinburgh
  • Davide Magagna, Simply Blue Group
  • Orbital Marine Power


Founded in 2014, CalWave’s mission is to provide reliable, cost-effective ocean wave technologies, including their proprietary wave energy converter technology (xWave™). The company was awarded the Department of Energy’s Wave Energy Prize for the technology with the highest efficiency.

In September 2022, CalWave successfully concluded their open-ocean wave energy pilot after 10 months of continuous operation off the coast of San Diego, boasting an impressive 99% uptime. The project was supported by a US Department of Energy (DOE) award with the goal to demonstrate their technology as a cost-effective, sustainable solution for energy generation. The same year, they were selected to receive a US$7.5 million grant from the US DOE.

CalWave has also signed a MOU with Launch Alaska (nonprofit deployment accelerator) to advance planning of wave energy projects. The MOU establishes a formal partnership for CalWave to connect their technologies to real projects and opportunities in the state of Alaska.

Henry Jeffrey

Henry has more than 25 years of experience in the energy sector, including strategic planning and management of energy technology, innovation, and infrastructure.

He established and heads up the Policy and Innovation Group, within the School of Engineering at the University of Edinburgh. The group analyses the dynamics of innovation and policy in offshore renewable energy systems; and provides analysis and advice to a network of academic research, industry and policy stakeholders.

Henry has also been the Head of Strategy and Internationalisation for Wave Energy Scotland for almost 8 years; and Chair of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) for more than 10 years. He was Chairman of the International Energy Agency (IEA) Ocean Energy Systems from 2017 to 2021.

Davide Magagna

Davide holds a PhD in Wave Energy Conversion from the University of Southampton. In September 2022, he joined Simply Blue Group as Country Manager for Italy, alongside his work as a consultant on renewable energy and sustainability.

Davide worked for eight years for the European Commission at the Joint Research Centre (JRC), in the Knowledge for the Energy Union Unit, which had a significant impact in the ocean energy sector. His work at the JRC had a strong emphasis on providing knowledge management and science-based evidence to policy makers working on ocean energy. While at the JRC, Davide represented the European Commission as a Delegate to the International Energy Agency (IEA) Ocean Energy Systems for almost 6 years. Following this, he worked for the Italian government at the Ministry of Ecological Transition, as an Energy and Ecological transition expert in the Technical Secretariat of the Minister.

His work on industry status reports on cost reduction data has made a vital contribution to the sector.

Orbital Marine Power

Orbital Marine Power is on a mission to help ‘turn the tide’ on climate change by commercialising their ground-breaking technology. The company’s O2 tidal stream device, a 2MW+ product capable of providing utility-scale, clean energy, began generating power in July 2021.

Orbital has been awarded two contracts for difference (CfDs) as part of UK Government renewable energy auction. Once Orbital’s tidal stream energy projects are completed, they would be able to power up to 7,200 homes. In addition, the projects are expected to create around 150 jobs through the manufacture and installation phase alone.

They have had good success with the Horizon 2020 funding programme, having won several calls, notably the FORWARD2030 project.

Last year, Orbital received an inward investment from Technip FMC, to accelerate the global commercialisation of its pioneering tidal energy technology.

WINNER: Britta Schaffmeister

Britta is specialised in innovation-driven public private partnerships between universities, companies and government authorities. She has been the CEO of the Dutch Marine Energy Centre (DMEC) for almost six years and an OEE board member since 2021. She has worked hard to improve the visibility of ocean energy in the Netherlands and to make sure the Dutch ocean energy sector speaks to their government with “one voice”.

Under her leadership, DMEC won EU-SCORES, a project that aims to deliver ‘world-first’ bankable hybrid offshore marine energy parks. The project will fund Europe’s first wave farm and “will unlock the large-scale potential of wind, wave and offshore solar systems.”

Recently, she has been selected as one of the three finalists for the Woman in Energy European Sustainability Award (EUSEW2022), which recognises outstanding individuals and projects for their innovation and efforts in energy efficiency and renewables. 

Previous winners

The Vi Maris Award was launched in 2019, the previous winner are: