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Method for Designing a High Capacity Factor Wide Area Virtual Wind Farm

Trenkel-Lopez, M.; Matthews, P.C.

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M. Trenkel-Lopez


Moving towards a future power system dominated by renewable energy, it is vital that the siting of spatial-dependent technologies such as wind maximises the power generation while minimising the variability associated with wind power. This study develops a novel methodology for wind farm diversification by identifying pairs and triplets of locations across Western Europe which together form `virtual' wind farms with a better guarantee of a minimum power generation level, providing capacity planners with tools to design a network of connected wind farms working together on a continental scale. These locations were found using hourly wind speed data spanning 10 years by examining time periods of local low wind availability at each grid point and identifying the best complementary wind resource locations. The best links are identified and presented in this paper. From an idealised capacity factor (CF) of 0.70 for a single site, the method found the potential for virtual CFs of 0.64 for grid point pairs and 0.68 for grid point triplets. This suggests that this approach can model virtual wind farms with virtual CFs comparable to conventional generation technologies and drastically reduce the amount of time during which farms are producing no power.


Trenkel-Lopez, M., & Matthews, P. (2018). Method for Designing a High Capacity Factor Wide Area Virtual Wind Farm. IET Renewable Power Generation, 12(3), 351-358.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 26, 2017
Online Publication Date Nov 6, 2017
Publication Date Feb 26, 2018
Deposit Date Nov 2, 2017
Publicly Available Date Nov 3, 2017
Journal IET Renewable Power Generation
Print ISSN 1752-1416
Electronic ISSN 1752-1424
Publisher Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 12
Issue 3
Pages 351-358


Accepted Journal Article (787 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This paper is a postprint of a paper submitted to and accepted for publication in IET Renewable Power Generation and is subject to Institution of Engineering and Technology Copyright. The copy of record is available at IET Digital Library.

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