The field of Coastal Ecology Engineering is rapidly developing and Ecocean and its partners have been involved for many years in setting up R&D projects for the preservation of marine biodiversity and the restoration of coastal habitats, especially focusing on solutions targeting juvenile fish protection. Ecocean notably developed solutions to recreate habitats and facilitate the installation of biodiversity along docks and pontoons in marinas and commercial ports (NAPPEX and GIREL projects). Ecocean, CDC Biodiversité and the CREM now want to continue these investigations and meet new needs by developing solutions for other types of marine infrastructure (e.g. breakwaters, pipes, mooring lines etc.). This is the purpose of the NUAMCE project, one of the 13 winners of the first call for project from the program “Investment for the Future” in the category "SME-Biodiversity Initiative" launched by the ADEME in 2015.

Interests & objectives

The project aims at finalizing three new types of solutions to improve the ecological function and biodiversity of marine infrastructures: -
The breakwater Biohut® requires a specific work of design optimization and evaluation of the environmental gain. It is composed of wooden sticks of variable length, nested at variable height on a perforated metal plate of modular form, with coconut fiber strands stretched between the wooden sticks. It is fixed by a shallow drilling of the stone surface. 270 breakwater Biohut® are installed as part of NUAMCE.
- The mooring Biohut® will be subjected to an assessment of its environmental gain and to technical improvement (fastening system). It consists of a wooden artificial habitat in the form of a "hoop net". Its height and width are adjustable and it is fixed along mooring lines already in place (20 mooring Biohut® are installed as part of NUANCE).
- The pipe Biohut® (produced in prototype phase) needs technical validation (production, transportation, installation, maintenance over time...). It is composed of a flexible metal plate (arc of a circle) on which are fixed sticks of wood of varying heights and secured to the emissaries without drilling.

Scientific monitoring

Breakwater and mooring modules are being scientifically monitored in situ during the project year by the laboratory of Perpignan. This study aims at evaluating the ecological gain from these structures.

Expected outcomes

NUAMCE is a complementary project indispensable to strengthen the development of the innovative concept launched these last 3 years (artificial nurseries for port areas). Through the extension of the range of targeted coastal infrastructures, these new Biohut® will also diversify the activity of Ecocean and aimed at new customers.
Finally, collaboration with the CDC Biodiversity will ultimately contribute to the creation and testing of innovative financial tools to reconcile economic development and preservation of biodiversity.


Project sheet NUAMCE (PDF)