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Keywords:

  • wind atlas;
  • wind resource mapping;
  • mesoscale modelling;
  • wind climate;
  • atmospheric boundary layer;
  • Finland

ABSTRACT

The Finnish Wind Atlas was prepared applying the mesoscale model AROME with 2.5 km horizontal resolution and the diagnostic downscaling method Wind Atlas Analysis and Application Programme (WAsP) with 250 m resolution. The latter was applied for areas most favourable for wind power production: a 30 km wide coastal/offshore zone, highlands, large lakes and large fields. The methodology included several novel aspects: (i) a climatologically representative period of real 48 months during 1989–2007 was simulated with the mesoscale model; (ii) in addition, the windiest and calmest months were simulated; (iii) the results were calculated separately for each month and for sectors 30° wide; (iv) the WAsP calculations were based on the mesoscale model outputs; (v) in addition to point measurements, also radar wind data were applied for the validation of the mesoscale model results; (vi) the parameterization method for gust factor was extended to be applicable at higher altitudes; and (vii) the dissemination of the Wind Atlas was based on new technical solutions. The AROME results were calculated for the heights of 50, 75, 100, 125, 150, 200, 300 and 400 m, and the WAsP results for the heights of 50, 75, 100, 125 and 150 m. In addition to the wind speed, the results included the values of the Weibull distribution parameters, the gust factor, wind power content and the potential power production, which was calculated for three turbine sizes. The Wind Atlas data are available for each grid point and can be downloaded free of charge from dynamic maps at www.windatlas.fi. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.