OWA launches open source benchmarking competition

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The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) has launched an international competition to improve current wind resource models in the offshore wind industry.

The competition will allow modellers access to six validation cases from operational wind farms in the North Sea, owned by the OWA’s industry partners. Industry and academic applicants are invited to participate to improve and strengthen their wake models.  

The OWA partners hope that this open source, collaborative methodology will help to progress the industry and allow more accurate energy yield predictions. 

Different validation datasets, taken from operational wind farms, will span a wide range of wind conditions related to wind farm topology and wind climate characteristics. These will be used to strength-test wind resource predictions, by comparing those predictions to real world examples. 

The staged benchmarking process is open for model developers and end-users to participate anonymously. The competition will run through several rounds through to December 2019. It is expected the work will provide a universally agreed methodology for validating wake models. 

The competition is being led by CENER and managed by the Carbon Trust with funding from the OWA partners – the Scottish Government, EnBW, E.ON, Iberdrola, Innogy, Ørsted, Shell, SSE, Equinor, and Vattenfall. 

Liam Leahy, offshore wind manager at the Carbon Trust and programme manager for the OWA’s wakes and wind resource technical working group, said, “The continued improvement in wake modelling for the offshore wind industry has been a key theme under the OWA programme, and the value of assessing modelling against actual operational data is one of the most valuable exercises we can do as a group to support the offshore wind industry. Bringing together competition participants to allow them to assess their wake models will only improve the process in predicting energy estimates from offshore wind farms.”