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SSE chooses SgurrEnergy’s Galion Lidar to test wind turbine performance

Published: June 27, 2013

Leading utility and power generator, SSE, has chosen to use Galion Lidar in a power performance assessment (PPA) at its operational Griffin wind farm, located south of Aberfeldy, in Perthshire, Scotland.

This groundbreaking measurement campaign will see international renewable energy company, SgurrEnergy, deploy a Galion G4000 Lidar at the base of a 2.3MW test turbine.  Galion will be used to provide detailed and accurate measurements of the wind which are necessary to test the power output of a wind turbine.  The accuracy of the measurements will be verified against an IEC compliant reference met mast and will be used to assess the conformance of the turbine to the manufacturer’s warranted power curve and to characterise the turbine’s response to complex wind conditions at the Griffin wind farm site.

Peter Clive, technical development officer with SgurrEnergy, said, “We are delighted to have the opportunity to demonstrate the capabilities of remote sensing to conduct PPAs using Galion Lidar. The key challenge when delivering wind power projects is achieving adequate characterisation of the wind resource on which power production relies.  As tools such as lidars become more sophisticated, the variable and uncontrolled conditions of the wind can be captured with higher detail and precision, helping to drive down project risk by supporting power production forecasts and informing operations and maintenance strategies.”

There has been a recent growth in interest in using lidar for PPAs which has been stimulated by a desire to reduce the costs of conducting these critical tests and to improve their precision and repeatability. The IEC engineering standard which governs PPAs is currently being updated to reflect cutting-edge, remote sensing technologies such as lidar, a process to which wind experts from SgurrEnergy are contributing through participation in IEC committees.

Daniel Stevens, Resource Assessment Manager at SSE, said, “SSE is keen to drive industry acceptance of Lidar as a trusted means of collecting wind data for IEC compliant power performance tests. We are therefore delighted to be working with SgurrEnergy on the deployment of a Galion G4000 at SSE’s Griffin wind farm and look forward to gaining the Galion’s unique insight into the wind flow occurring across the entire rotor of the turbine being tested”.

This measurement campaign builds on the recent success of SgurrEnergy’s Galion Lidar in achieving independent verification by Fraunhofer IWES, of a wind measurement technique similar to that which will be used at Griffin wind farm. Galion Lidar was also recently given the seal of approval by Deutsche WindGuard and has been deployed for a number of high-profile projects in the North Sea, Baltic Sea and South China Sea.

SgurrEnergy expects to release exciting results as this measurement campaign progresses, and will use experience gained to strengthen its position as a global leader in the application of remote sensing techniques for wind energy.


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