New Program Gives Community Wind Projects Access to Leading-Edge Wind Resource Assessment Technology

Second Wind, a leader in wind measurement systems, today announced a new program to fuel the growth of community-scale wind power projects. The Community Wind Information Service uses leading-edge wind measurement technology to provide comprehensive wind resource analyses to individuals and groups who are considering wind turbines on sites such as farms, industrial facilities, landfills, schools, wastewater treatment plants and community lands.

The service will enable community wind developers to decide quickly and cost-effectively whether the wind resource at their site will make their proposed wind power project economically viable. The process begins with Second Wind deploying a Triton® Sonic Wind Profiler to conduct a wind measurement campaign. Second Wind then analyzes the Triton data and other wind information sources to produce a Wind Information Report. The report includes detailed wind resource data, energy estimates, and capacity factors of turbines that the customer is considering. With minimal environmental impact, few permitting requirements, and a fast installation process, Triton can accelerate the development process. Because Triton units are easily relocated, Second Wind can evaluate multiple sites in a single community faster and at a lower cost than meteorological towers.

‘Community wind project economics are very tight,’ said Matthew Cumberworth, Sr., vice president wind energy at WPCS, an international design-build engineering firm that provides meteorological tower and Triton installation, maintenance, and data services to wind farm developers. ‘Many projects don’t have a budget for consulting and equipment purchases for site evaluation. A service like Second Wind’s can make the difference between a productive project and a project that’s shut down after a year.’

Triton is an advanced remote sensing system that uses sodar technology to measure wind at higher heights than the previous tower-based standard. By measuring wind speeds at the turbine rotor’s hub height and beyond (up to 200 meters), Triton reduces uncertainty in annual energy production (AEP) forecasts. Triton’s ease of deployment also streamlines the wind farm development process.

‘Community wind projects need a credible, low-cost and efficient method for evaluating their sites,’ said Michael Wiltshire, Triton account manager at Second Wind. ‘The Community Wind Information Service is a turnkey proposition. The customer doesn’t have to hire multiple parties or go through the onerous permitting procedures that met towers require. After the measurement campaign is finished, they get a report that details all of our findings so they can make informed decisions about their project.’

The Community Wind Information Service is available to municipalities, private landowners, engineering firms, or anyone developing community wind projects. It is cost-optimized for projects with small capital budgets involving low numbers of small turbines – one or two megawatts. The assessment period can last anywhere from three to 12 months, and all service options are priced under $50,000 USD.

Second Wind develops wind measurement systems that make wind power pay off for consumers, investors and the environment. The company’s technology provides wind farm developers with the bankable wind data they need to plan, finance and operate highly efficient wind generation facilities. Second Wind’s systems are making wind farm development profitable in 50 countries on seven continents. Second Wind’s systems include Triton, the wind industry’s leading remote sensing system, Nomad 2 wind data logger systems, the ProMast 60, a 60-meter meteorological mast and the SkyServe® web-based data service.