DNV GL seal of approval for ZephIR

European classification body DNV GL has given its stamp of approval to Fred Olsen outfit ZephIR’s ZephIR 300 Lidar system as “bankable” for wind energy assessments in benign onshore and offshore environments.

The device, currently being piloted on a floating spar buoy at RWE Innogy’s Gywnt Y Mor wind farm off Wales, was judged to provide finance-grade data independent of comparisons with industry-standard, cup-anemometer-based met masts.

The ZephIR 300 measures wind characteristics from 10-200 metres (33-650 feet) from a unit’s location to flesh out wind regime studies during the development and operation of a wind farm.

“ZephIR 300 is accurate, reliable and affordable, adding value to wind energy projects at every stage - from pre-planning, through development and on to operation,” says ZephIR.

“Every system is uniquely subjected to an industry-approved validation process, ensuring repeatable finance-grade data.”

The company is fine-tuning a “dual mode” model of the 300 system that is nacelle-mounted to measure wind characteristics in front or behind a turbine from 10-300 metres during operation, to optimise performance.

“The use of FLDs in place of or in combination with conventional offshore meteorological masts offers potential benefits for the industry in terms of development costs, consenting timescales and the uncertainty associated with wind resource estimates,” says DNV GL’s Richard Whiting.

“However, a significant body of supporting validation data must be established for each FLD to enable the confidence to be gained in measurement accuracy and reliability.”