Advancing Technology for Offshore Wind Resource Characterizations

Period of Performance: 07/31/2017 - 07/30/2019

$1000K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Helios Remote Sensing Systems, Inc.
52 Geiger Road Suite 2
Rome, NY 13441
Firm POC
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Development of a low-cost marine atmospheric boundary layer (MABL) measurement system which could serve as a core element of a buoy-based data collection network for the offshore renewable energy industry is needed. A commercially viable, buoy-based remote sensing technology for MABL characterization for offshore wind applications is needed. Key requirements are that measurements must support profiles of wind speed and direction, temperature, humidity, and atmospheric stability up to heights of 200 m, with data sampling and communication rates appropriate for advanced rapid refresh weather modeling. In addition, the sensor package size, weight and power consumption should be suitable for deployment on existing met-ocean buoy platforms. The measurement technology should serve as a lower-cost alternative to existing measurement technologies. The objective of this research and development effort is to develop a low cost, low power, fully coherent, marine atmospheric boundary layer (MABL) Doppler radar measurement system which can serve as a core element of a buoy-based data collection network for the offshore renewable energy industry. Since the radar provides only wind related data products, additional measurement techniques to measure temperature, humidity and atmospheric stability are required. The heart of our proposed MABL measurement system is a compact wind profiling radar measurement instrument that provides buoy-based MABL characterization for offshore wind applications, including profiles of wind speed and direction to heights of over 200 m and communication rates appropriate for advanced rapid refresh weather modeling. The atmospheric measurement package size, weight, and power consumption are projected to be suitable for deployment on existing met-ocean buoy platforms. The Phase II work plan encompasses the following tasks: (1) refine detailed system design requirements and thoroughly review with end users, and then (2) complete system prototype detailed design, (3) complete the wind profiling processing algorithm validation, (4) develop processing algorithms for additional wind profiling products and finalize support algorithms, (5) develop the integrated hardware/software system prototype, and (6) perform system prototype test / demonstration / validation. The paucity of adequate measurements needed to characterize the kinematic and thermodynamic state of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) has been a perennial problem facing meteorologists and atmospheric scientists. The complex interactions of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) with the Earth’s surface tend to make this layer of the atmosphere highly variable in time and spatially inhomogeneous. Diagnostic and prognostic equations conventionally used in the lower free atmosphere are difficult to apply in the ABL, which makes the need for measurements all the more necessary. Application of the technology to be developed promises to provide a lower- cost and more complete alternative to existing measurement technologies leading to significant cost savings in the offshore wind farm industry.