Catapult’s Ignacio Marti elected as new Chairman of IEA Wind

Published 22 October 2015

The International Energy Agency Wind Energy Group (IEA Wind) announces that Ignacio Marti, Innovation & Research Director of the UK-based Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, has been newly elected as the Chair of the Executive Committee.

Marti and newly elected Vice Chair Dr. Stephan Barth, Managing Director of ForWind Center for Wind Energy Research in Germany, will join re-elected Vice Chairs John McCann of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, and Brian Smith of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in the United States.

IEA Wind is a global network of researchers and policy experts focused on advancing wind energy development within the 24 member countries. Within this over-arching international collaboration, experts engage in 15 cooperative research, development, and deployment research tasks. The 15 working groups focus on sharing the latest technologies and best practices and overcoming specific wind energy development barriers faced by the member countries.

As of December 2014, more than 370 gigawatts of wind electricity are in operation worldwide and provide 5% of the world’s electricity demand. Commemorating his tenure as Chair, Jim Ahlgrimm, of the Wind and Water Technologies Program at the U.S. Department of Energy, reflected on IEA Wind’s integral role in advancing wind energy:

“The member countries of the IEA Wind Energy Group are world leaders in wind deployment and represent 85% of the world’s installed wind capacity. R&D collaboration among IEA Wind member countries has played a major role in addressing the most difficult to solve wind technology challenges; and collaboration will continue to be important as future challenges are identified and addressed.”

The newly elected and returning officers of the IEA Wind Executive Committee reflect the international and innovation-minded makeup of the participating member organizations.

Ignacio Marti, ORE Catapult’s Innovation & Research Director and the new Chairman of IEA Wind, said:

“This is a critical time for the development of the global wind industry and I am determined that IEA Wind continues to have a hugely significant role in driving forward its further development.  Major international collaborative research and development programmes and activities are more essential than ever to advance wind energy’s vital contribution to global energy security.

“I look forward to taking up my Chairmanship and continuing the significant research and innovation contributions that IEA Wind’s activities have made in furthering the global wind industry.”

Organizations wishing to engage in IEA Wind research activities should contact Patricia Weis-Taylor, Secretariat for IEA Wind ( ), or any IEA Wind Executive Committee member for further information (


Notes to editors

Chair Ignacio Marti directs innovation and research at ORE Catapult, an independent, not-for-profit business in the United Kingdom focused on technology innovation and research to accelerate the development of offshore wind, wave, and tidal technologies. ORE Catapult was established in 2013 by the UK Government and is one of ten such Catapults set up by Innovate UK in high growth industries. It is the UK’s flagship technology innovation and research centre for offshore wind, wave and tidal energy and delivers prioritised research underpinned by world-class test and demonstration facilities, collaborating with industry, academia and Government to reduce the cost of offshore renewable energy and create UK economic benefit.

Newly elected Vice Chair, Dr. Stephan Barth, is Managing Director of ForWind, the Center for Wind Energy Research in Germany. The center conducts fundamental research in wind energy, providing independent scientific cooperation in industry-oriented projects and organizing the education, and further education, of future experts.

Incumbent Vice Chair John McCann of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) helps lead that agency’s mission to transform Ireland into a society based on sustainable energy structures, technologies, and practices.

Incumbent Vice Chair Brian Smith is the Director of Partnerships at the National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in the United States. The NWTC is the nation’s premier wind energy technology research facility that advances the development of innovative land-based and offshore wind and marine hydrokinetic energy technologies through research, development, deployment, and demonstration.

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