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WEATHER FORECASTING SERVICES


FEATURE SPONSOR


SUPPORTING SAFE OPERATIONS THROUGH ACCURACY IN MARINE WEATHER FORECASTING


Marine weather conditions have a significant impact on the offshore renewable energy industry


During the construction phase of offshore windfarms, to mitigate against these impacts, there is a need for wind and sea forecasts to avoid personnel being exposed to dangerous conditions and to avoid the risk of damage or loss to expensive infrastructure and assets.


Likewise, during the O&M phase, safe working and operational efficiency, as well as routine maintenance and extraordinary inspections, can all be hindered by adverse wind and wave conditions. Regional forecasts generally do not provide sufficient accuracy, particularly where there are shallow banks or strong currents.


RISING TO THE CHALLENGE Meeting these challenges requires accurate short to medium range forecasts based on downscaling modelling. This ensures that the timescales and the zones covered by the forecasts are as precise as possible, so that decision-making is based upon information which is genuinely site- specific and includes regular updates and warnings relevant to the operational constraints of the particular site.


HR Wallingford has a long track record of providing high resolution metocean conditions: wind, wave, water level


and currents for the design stages, but also operational marine forecasting services for the construction and O&M phases. For example, the company provided high resolution forecasts of wave conditions for the construction of the Gunfleet Sands Offshore Wind Farm and the Lynn and Inner Dowsing Wind Farm. Behind these services is a history of marine research and modelling experience.


DEVELOPING SOLUTIONS The company has developed a coastal and marine forecasting service which combines global and regional wind and wave forecasts, with downscaling local wave transformation and response models. This provides high spatial (downscaled to 50m) and temporal (down to 15 minutes) site specific forecasts and warning services for both the short to medium term (one to five days) and potentially longer lead times of up to ten days.


The forecasts can also include the response of vessels to marine conditions, with assessments of ship mooring and underkeel clearance in approaches to and within ports, to assist planning the logistics of vessel routing, cable laying and the safe and efficient use of marine, port and offshore facilities.


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www.windenergynetwork.co.uk


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