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Met Office launches flexible wind power forecaster



The Met Office has unveiled a new high-tech tool that allows the wind power industry to accurately calculate the amount of energy that will be generated from turbines.

Wind Production Forecast Plus is an advancement of the organisation’s Wind Production Forecast – a successful interface that has been enhanced to incorporate site-specific wind speed observations.

The updated forecaster analyses a number of factors into its predictions, which it produces every half an hour for as far in advance as six days.

And some developers have already been using the newly-launched tool, including SSE, whose head of forecasting Mo Rezvani said he was “impressed with [its] accuracy”.

He added, “Recent comparisons have shown it to be the most accurate of those that we receive. Highly accurate weather forecasts are a critical part of predicting power output at our sites.”

Rob Harrison, head of renewables at the Met Office, explained some of the improvements that have been made to the tool.

With sophisticated lagging and blending techniques and the addition of Kalman filtered site observations, our new forecast option gives operators increased confidence in their power estimations, minimising the risk of having to generate or buy energy from elsewhere, or facing penalty charges as a result of incorrect estimations of wind energy production”, he said.

It’s hoped that the advanced forecaster will encourage utilities to develop and install wind technology further, given the increased knowledge and tools now at their disposal.

Further reading:

It’s time to move to a 3D energy policy

The Wind in the Wicklow: Ireland’s quest for energy independence

Renewable energy: the foundation of a blue and green tomorrow

The Guide to Limitless Clean Energy