Volume XIII |

Assessment of the long-term wind energy resources in the Southern Bârlad Plateau. An applied climatology study

Abstract: In order to evaluate the long-term wind conditions and energy resources in the Southern Bârlad Plateau, the WINDATLAS method has been applied, using the numerical software programs WindPRO 2.7 and WAsP 9. For this purpose, 2 years (2008 – 2010) of in-situ wind measurement data from two locations were used. These time series have been adjusted to a 30-year long-term period (1981-2010), using NCAR global weather analyses data, and validated with the monthly means of the wind speed recorded at Galați meteorological station (1981-2010). On the basis of the new generated long-term time series, local wind statistics have been obtained, which were used for wind conditions assessment and energy yield calculations within the study area. The average wind speed, the Weibull parameters for the vertical wind profile, as well as the expected wind energy resources have been determined. The Southern Bârlad Plateau is characterized by high wind energy potential demonstrated by long-term averaged wind speeds larger than 7 m/s (at 120 m a.g.l.), similar to Dobrogea region, and by corresponding wind energy values of more than 3000 kWh/m2 at hill top positions. Another key issue is that the energy potential of this area is relatively constant at multi-annual scale, with prevailing winds from northern and southern directions, making it highly suitable for the development of Multi-Megawatt wind farms. The results obtained by applying this complex methodology can be practically valorized by being further integrated in energy production estimates and feasibility studies for wind farms.