Wind Energy Resource Atlas of the United States


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Appendix D Evaluation of New Site Data for Verifying or Updating The Wind Resource Estimates


Appendix E

Annual and Seasonal Mean Wind Speed and Power Summaries For 35 Candidate Wind Turbine Sites

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has sponsored meteorological measurement programs at a number of locations around the United States for the purpose of site evaluation for wind energy utilization. The locations are identified in Map E-1. Seventeen candidate sites were originally selected from proposals submitted by electric utility organizations in 1976. Data measurement programs began at most of these sites in late 1976 or 1977. At most sites, the sensors were installed at 9.1 m (30 ft) and 45.7 m (150 ft) levels. At some sites, the lower level was installed at 18.2 m (60 ft) to avoid effects on the measurements by nearby obstructions. At Cold Bay, Alaska, the top level sensor was mounted at 21.8 m (72 ft) on a Federal Aviation Administration tower. Two sites, Kacna Point, Hawaii, and Boardman, Oregon, had data acquisition programs in progress, and, thus, installation of government equipment was not required. Data at most of the sites were initially recorded on strip-chart recorders. In late 1978 and early 1979, all strip-chart recorders were replaced with digital cassette data loggers.

In 1980, an additional 20 sites were added to the candidate site measurement program. Ultimately, towers were installed at 18 of these 20 sites. Configuration of the measurement system at these sites differed somewhat from those at the 17 original sites. The data were collected from sensors at three levels on a meteorological tower. At most of the sites, the sensor heights were at 9.1 m (30 ft), 30.0 m (100 ft), and 45.7 m (150 ft). The data were recorded digitally at each site on a data cassette recording system with an instantaneous sample of data recorded every two minutes.

In 1981, after installation of large wind turbines at six sites (including the MOD-2 cluster at Goodnoe Hills, Washington), the emphasis of the DOE program was shifted from systems development to technology research. Because of this, the candidate site program, which had also served to develop and apply techniques for analyzing wind resources and for prospecting for good sites, was curtailed. Measurements at most of the original 17 sites (with the exception of those having large wind turbines for field testing) were terminated. The candidate site meteorological data acquisition program was completed at all remaining sites as of September 30, 1982. Most of the equipment that was in the field at that time was turned over to participating utilities for their own use. A history of the candidate site program was published by Renne et al. (1982).

Summarized data for the seventeen original sites are available in a series of annual data reports (Sandusky and Renne 1981a, 1981b; and Sandusky et al. 1982a) and a cumulative data report through December 1981 (Sandusky et al. 1982b). Summarized data for the new sites selected and for those original sites with data collection programs continuing into 1982 are also available (Sandusky et al. 1983). These reports contain information for each site on data recovery rates, available power, maximum values observed, annual mean wind speed values, diurnal mean wind speed and direction values, frequency distribution of wind speed, wind speed persistence, and power law exponent as a function of wind direction.

In this appendix, summaries of the annual and seasonal average wind speed and wind power density are presented for 35 of the DOE candidate sites. The site name, location, elevation, period of record, and anemometer heights corresponding to the speed and power summaries are provided for each site. In the listing of the mean speed and power summaries, an asterisk (*) denotes that the mean wind speed and power are based on less than 75% data recovery for the period. A pound symbol (#) indicates that the annual wind speed and power are based on less than four full seasons' data. The recovery rates for all sensor levels for the sites in Hawaii and Vermont were lower than what is normally considered acceptable. These sites were located in remote areas and were affected by an extremely hostile environment of salt spray and moisture (Hawaii) or severe icing (Vermont) that affected the operation of sensors and data loggers.

These candidate site data summaries were evaluated and used in verifying or updating the wind energy estimates presented in this atlas for the United States. The evaluation and use of the wind data from some of the sites in updating the wind resource assessment are described in Appendix D of this atlas and throughout Chapter 3 (the regional summaries).

References

Renne, D. S., W. F. Sandusky, and D. L. Hadley. 1982. Meteorological Field Measurements at Potential and Actual Wind Turbine Sites. PNL4431, Pacific Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Sandusky, W. F., and D. S. Renne. 1981a. Candidate Wind Turbine Generator Site Annual Data Summary for January 1979 Through December 1979. PNL-3703, Pacific Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Sandusky, W. F., and D. S. Renne. 1981b. Candidate Wind Turbine Generator Site Annual Data Summary for January 1980 Through December 1980. PNL-3739, Pacific Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Sandusky, W. F., J. W. Buck, D. S. Renne, D. L. Hadley, and O. B. Abbey. 1982a. Candidate Wind Turbine Generator Site Annual Data Summary for January 1981 Through December 1981. PNL-4283, Pactfic Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Sandusky, W. F., D. S. Renne, and D. L. Hadley. 1982b. Candidate Wind Turbine Generator Site Summarized Meteorological Data for the Period December 1976 to December 1981. PNL-4407, Pactfic Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Sandusky, W. F., J. W. Buck, D. S. Renne, D. L. Hadley, O. B. Abbey, S. L. Bradymire, and J. L. Gregory. 1983. Candidate Wind Turbine Generator Site Cumulative Meteorological Data Summary and Data for January 1982 Through September 1982. PNL-4663, Pactfic Northwest Laboratory, Richland, Washington.


Table E-1. U.S. Department of Energy candidate wind turbine sites


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