Wind prediction and wind resource assessment: ETSWIND Project

What is ETSWIND Project?

Since 2012, SOLUTE is carrying out the most important R&D project since its foundation: ETSWIND Project. This project is being financed by the “Centro para el Desarrollo Tecnológico Industrial” (CDTI) and it will go on for the next 3 years.

The aim of this R&D Project is to develop software and tools that will allow wind resource assessment at higher levels with more accuracy, as well as improved wind and energy short term prediction as a function of continuous measurements readings and climatological trends derived from historical data. The development of these software will provide important time reductions in wind resource estimation, improvements on wind characterization at higher levels (above 100m), better long term wind speed reconstructions and instantaneous wind farm energy production prediction as a function of wind measurements at a given site.

With ETSWIND Project, SOLUTE expands its R&D fields (to the existing on design and development of wind turbines) and commits to the creation of a permanent department dedicated to the study of wind behavior and software development which will allow more precise short term and long term wind predictions.

Which is the frame of ETSWIND Project?

ETSWIND is framed on current European research fields set on the European Industrial Initiatives (EII), and in particular on the wind energy sector, European Wind Initiative (EWI), whose main objectives are the following:

  • Keep European technological leadership on wind energy, both onshore and offshore.
  • Make the onshore wind energy the most competitive energy source by 2020, followed by offshore on 2030.
  • Make wind energy capable of providing at least 20% of Europe’s electricity by 2020, increasing these percentages up to 33% on 2030 and 50% by 2050.

One of the key issues on the SRA (Strategic Research Agenda) of the platform created within the EWI, the so-called TPWind (Wind Energy Technology Platform), is the one related with Wind Conditions. The main goal is to develop more efficient methodologies to identify those regions rich on wind potential but poorly exploited. Moreover, this platform proposes a long term general objective named “3% vision”, whose main purpose is to reduce uncertainties down to 3% on the fields related to wind resource estimation, wind conditions and short term wind and energy forecasting schemes.

In order to accomplish the main objectives, the platform TPWind is in charge of identifying and prioritizing areas of growing innovation as well as new and existing areas for research and development. These three main goals, which are based on the use of two very important tools for R&D such as CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) and remote sensing devices (LIDAR and SODAR), are supported on six supplementary research topics:

  • Siting of wind turbines in complex terrain and forested areas
  • Offshore meteorology
  • Wakes in and between wind farms
  • Extreme wind speeds
  • Wind profiles at heights greater than 100m and use of remote sensing techniques
  • Short term forecasting

The driving force of this Project is based on the potential improvements detected on each one of six supplementary research topics.

Who participates with SOLUTE on ETSWIND Project?

As to achieve all the goals set for ETSWIND Project, the collaboration among all wind energy communities and meteorology scientific community (present at universities) becomes necessary to move forward on the development of new and better wind atlases, as well as for improving the understanding of physical phenomena which influence the fore mentioned topics.

For this reason, SOLUTE works with two important research groups with wide knowledge and experience on these fields: GHEODE Research Group w which belongs to Department of Signal Theory and Communications of Alcalá de Henares University (UAH) , and Mecánica de Fluidos aplicada a la Ingeniería Industrial Research Group which belongs to the Department of Fluidmechanics and Energy Engineering of the Madrid’s Polytechnic University (UPM-ETSII). Additionally, SOLUTE is working with the company INTERMET.

Which are the objectives of ETSWIND Project?

  • Carrying out an intensive measuring campaign with an 80m meteorological mast including sonic anemometers (with high temporal resolution) to measure wind profiles, turbulent parameters and atmospheric stability. Additionally remote sensing devices such as SODAR will allow characterizing wind resource above 100m. Through this measuring campaign, better physical formulation will be derived in order to infer wind profiles above 100m, and will allow validating the results obtained with the wind resource estimation tool developed by SOLUTE.

  • Developing new software for management and analysis of meteorological data from wind farms, and wind speed and temperature profiles description taking into account atmospheric stability. This new software will allow identifying the most relevant wind speed, wind direction and temperature profiles under different stability conditions. Also, it will allow dealing with SODAR and LIDAR information.
  • Developing new software for the correct estimation of wind resource and energy production for a given site optimizing the results through the optimization and unification of the existing programs UPMORO and UPMPARK. Its application will be extended to offshore wind farms where stability has an important role.
  • Studying a new methodology fatigue loads analysis on wind turbines establishing new design criteria which will be more similar to those observed at particular sites, including particular situations such as low level jets and termal inversion.
  • Developing a new long term wind reconstruction tool, based on the classification of synoptic situations of pressure/geopotential (and other meteorological variables) with an associated wind speed value, when there is no nearby reference station at the site to use MCP methodologies.

 

  • Developing new software for short-term wind and energy forecasting based on a multi-model approach which will allow forecasting by choosing the best statistical model which better adapts to the specific meteorological situation at current prediction time.