Floating Lidar arrives at Narec

Developer Mainstream Renewable Power (MRP) has deployed the North Sea’s first commercial floating Lidar unit at the UK’s National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec) as part of its planned 450MW Neart Na Gaoithe offshore wind project off Scotland.

The device, designed to capture wind data in the harshest marine environments, has started a three-month validation programme alongside Narec’s recently installed offshore anemometry research platform off the coast of Blyth, in northeast England.

The floating Lidar, supplied by technology outfit FLiDAR, is made up of state-of-the-art wind measurement equipment including a Leosphere Lidar mounted on a standard marine buoy that is powered by onboard PV and wind micro-turbines.

Floating Lidar technology has the potential to spur a significant shift away from fixed offshore meteorological masts generally used in assessing the wind resource at developments.

MRP’s Neart na Gaoithe project will be made up of 72-90 turbines standing in up to 54 metres of water.