Babcock, the UK’s leading engineering support services company, has deployed its floating LiDAR (light detection and ranging) technology to provide valuable offshore wind data to the proposed Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm.
Babcock’s innovative floating LiDAR system, ‘FORECAST’, has been installed as part of a 12 month contract to collect wind resource and metocean data, for Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm Ltd (AOWFL).
Moored to the seabed at the site of the proposed 11 wind turbines, 92.4MW capacity wind farm, five kilometres off the Aberdeen coast, FORECAST collects information by light detection and ranging on a variety of wind parameters across the rotor span, including minimum, maximum and average wind speed, turbulence intensity, temperature, humidity and atmospheric pressure.
The data, collected by an array of on-board sensor systems, will provide valuable insight into the complex near-shore wind conditions and offers significant cost advantages over more traditional ‘fixed’ installations.
Providing a platform to host the LiDAR technology, the Babcock system’s low motion capability removes the need to compensate for wave motion or conduct post-processing of the data. This provides a highly accurate data service with reduced uncertainty, giving wind farm developers a high level of confidence in the data collected.
This is the second deployment of Babcock’s floating LiDAR, with the system having previously undergone a successful 18 month trial offshore at RWE’s Gwynt-y-Mor site in Liverpool Bay, during which it achieved a significant milestone on the Carbon Trust’s accreditation roadmap for this type of device.
Babcock managing director for Energy & Marine Technology Ian Lindsay said: “This is another key development for the Renewable sector and an exciting programme for the Rosyth team to be involved in.
“The Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm deployment is another great opportunity for our LiDAR system to demonstrate its industry leading capabilities and is an endorsement of the skills and capabilities of the FORECAST team and the industry leading technology it has developed.”
Offshore construction works at the Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm are due to start in the autumn of 2017.