HR Wallingford is an independent civil engineering and environmental hydraulics organisation with a 70 year heritage, delivering solutions to complex water-related challenges worldwide across both freshwater and marine sectors.
One of its current projects is the £300M Aberdeen Harbour Expansion, which HR Wallingford is developing alongside Arch Henderson.
The harbour on the east coast of Scotland is exposed to waves of over 8m in height, and the design, construction and operation presented significant challenges.
HR Wallingford provided pre-feasibility, feasibility and detailed design studies. The project involved cliff excavation and dredging to provide the navigation channel. Surveying the cliffs using conventional techniques was challenging, so the team used Aspect Surveys to survey using drones, providing greater detail and a safer method of working.
A Virtual Reality (VR) model of the proposed harbour was created in the navigation simulator, much like aircraft flight simulators. The VR model was used with HR Wallingford’s ship, tidal flow, wave and wind models, to test different vessels and conditions. This proved the project viable, and produced a lower cost and safer design.
HR Wallingford prides itself on its technical excellence and on attracting and developing talent. It has strong links with universities and colleges and its staff – many of whom are international authorities in their field – act as visiting tutors and professors.
The company helps its employees fulfill career goals and each member of staff is preparing a development action plan. A mentoring scheme is also being introduced.
HR Wallingford supports staff to gain further qualifications and is a registered affiliate research company with the Open University, offering a PhD route. The company has developed and will be delivering the Environment Agency’s new flood and coastal engineering degree programme with Brunel University.
HR Wallingford has helped staff to attain chartered membership through ICE, Ciwem and IMarEST, and is developing its accredited training courses further. Staff can choose from over 30 in-house practitioner courses and are encouraged to suggest and share research ideas, and publish papers.
NCE100 ranking: 15
Shortlisted: Technology Champion