A new initiative is set to improve how industry predicts wind speed as the University of Bristol and Lloyd’s Register bring together technical expertise with science to help generate better data on windfarm performance
Working together, academics in the UK and representatives of class society Lloyd’s Register hope to develop options to increase the quality, accuracy and access to data used in monitoring and predicting wind trends.
Students studying bachelor’s and master’s programmes in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Bristol will be involved in one of Lloyd’s Register’s latest wind energy initiatives to develop and improve wind speed analysis and data for trend comparisons through Lloyd’s Register’s ‘windiness dashboard’.
The dashboard can be used by investors, developers, owners and operators of current windfarms to assess and predict energy production at all project stages from planning and development through to operation.
Monitoring, recording and interpreting wind speed trends can be extremely valuable to windfarm investors, developers, owners and operators, enabling wind turbine and windfarm performance to be assessed and evaluated.
The initiative between the University of Bristol and Lloyd’s Register provides industry with a unique platform to investigate wind speed and windfarm production trends. It offers the prospect of transformative improvements in predicting future wind power production.
“Wind speed variability remains one of the most pressing issues for developers and operators of windfarms,” said Lloyd’s Register’s technical lead, energy resources services David Pullinger. “Wind is inherently variable, and this has a significant impact on the financial returns of projects. By providing access to the accurate, clear and concise information the industry demands, this project will increase understanding of the risks involved, resulting in better decision making.”
The initiative is attracting interest across a sector that is hungry for innovative new products and opportunities to introduce new talent to the wind sector.
Mr Pullinger said “We want to inspire the next generation of engineers and scientists, and this partnership with the University of Bristol is one example of how we are inspiring students into the world of work, sharing what we do to enhance the global drive for cleaner and more sustainable energy production.”
Lloyd’s Register experts will add further value to this process by mentoring students in real-life experiences as product owners. “The initiative is great for trying out new ideas and for students to explore technologies and learn software engineering in their computer science degree. We are delighted that we can support students from the University of Bristol in this way and help support the next generation of technology and renewable scientists,” said Mr Pullinger.
The data shared in the project will help to build up year-on-year trends, understand better the siting considerations for windfarm developments and provide a reliable and quality-driven index of wind data.
The project will run until April 2018, and Lloyd’s Register and the University of Bristol will publish the outcome of the initiative and its initial findings in May 2018.
“Our solutions approach to improving predictability and reliability ensures that a wide range of future windfarms offshore and onshore stand to benefit from the data we can share through the dashboard,” Mr Pullinger concluded.
Block Island certified by ABS
ABS Group, the independent certified verification agent (CVA) for the Block Island windfarm project off Rhode Island, has issued a verification certificate to the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC) supporting the reliable operation of the first commercial windfarm in US waters. The CRMC is the permitting agency responsible for overseeing that windfarm operations conform to state regulations.
The Block Island Wind Farm began commercial operations in December 2016, and the five-turbine windfarm is currently producing 30 MW at full capacity. As part of the CVA scope of work, ABS Group provided technical verification services to help confirm that the Block Island facilities had been designed, fabricated and installed in accordance with industry standards and accepted engineering practices. ABS Group presented the final facility design report and fabrication and installation report to the CRMC at the semi-monthly CRMC council meeting on 9 January 2018.