Naomi Pierce, Second Wind Inc.
September 28, 2010
When Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) decided to expand its wind development activity, it took a closer look at how it was measuring and collecting wind data for site assessment. Realizing that managing data communications was presenting a major hurdle, CPV brought in Second Wind monitoring systems to provide large accurate data sets for evaluating wind power potential in even the most isolated remote sites.
The company’s expansion into more remote wind site areas meant CPV needed more data collection points unified by a communications network that enabled remote monitoring and management.
CPV’s Paul Wendelgass, vice president and manager of Canadian operations for wind, evaluated the company’s existing measurement strategies and recommended an efficient, cost-effective solution based on Second Wind Nomad data loggers and the SkyServe satellite data service. CPV was also an early adopter of Second Wind’s Triton sonic wind profiler.
“After evaluating our situation, we realized we really needed products that were flexible, that didn’t rely on spotty cell phone networks for communication, and that offered an additional reporting element,” he said. “I decided to work with Second Wind because the Nomads provided a level of flexibility for adding wind vanes, temperature sensors and barometers without any additional work. The SkyServe satellite service gave me communication capabilities we didn’t have before, real-time diagnostics and, if necessary, the ability to fix a problem soon after we detected it.”
CPV Renewable Energy Company, CPV’s renewable energy division, is developing nearly 7,500 MW of additional wind power projects across North America, with plans for more. Recently, CPV began construction of its 152-MW wind farm in Woodward County, Oklahoma which is slated to go on-line later this year. The first phase of this project was sold to Oklahoma Gas and Electric and is currently delivering electricity into the grid. “CPV is the kind of company we like to align ourselves with because our missions are so similar,” commented Larry Letteney, Second Wind’s CEO. “We’re both in the business of bringing new sources of energy to the world rapidly by careful planning, thorough research and assessment and a constant focus on innovation.”
CPV’s deep experience assessing and managing renewable energy sites gives the company unique insight into the requirements for making a project successful. “It can take up to a year of collecting data and development activity to get a site approved,” Wendelgass said. “What I’ve liked about Second Wind since we started working with them in 2006 is their focus on helping us succeed and providing not only the necessary products, but responsive service which is critical when you’re relying on data to fund a new site.”
CPV is able to maximize its investment in the Nomad data loggers and Triton units because once they have served their purpose at one site they can easily be moved to a new destination and put to work almost immediately. The SkyServe® Satellite Wind Data Service® has also been instrumental in providing easy-to-read reports for non-scientific audiences. SkyServe combines both real-time and historical information for a comprehensive assessment of a site’s performance. “The Tritons are very easy to move from one location to another,” Wendelgass said. “Due to their compact design we don’t need special transport vehicles or armies of people to relocate them and the fact we can use them at multiple sites translates into a very quick return on investment.”
Second Wind’s Triton® is a ground-based profiling unit that employs SODAR – SOund Detection And Ranging, a variation on radar, but with sound instead of radio waves – to measure wind speed, direction, and other data. Triton remote sensing systems give wind power companies a mobile, ground-based complement to tower-based data collection. It broadens the range of data wind companies have for siting turbines in the most productive locations possible, profiling winds as high as 200 meters off the ground. The Nomad® wind resource data logger compiles data from all industry-leading sensors and sends it to users through a wide range of remote communications options, including SkyServe. Second Wind recently sold its 10,000th Nomad. The units are deployed on seven continents, from the Arctic to Antarctica, with each unit compiling data from as many as 20 weather sensors.
“CPV is clearly on its way to becoming one of North America’s leading wind power plant operators. The company has recently signed 500 MW of power purchase agreements in Oklahoma, North Dakota and Kansas and has acquired a pipeline of several thousand MW in Canada,” Letteney said. “We look forward to continuing our relationship with CPV well into the future and applaud their efforts to make renewable energy a certain reality.”
Competitive Power Ventures Holdings, LLC (CPV) is a leading North American electric power generation development and asset management company headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, with offices in Braintree, Massachusetts, San Francisco, California, and Ontario, Canada. CPV’s development arm adheres to a focused strategy of creating significant new clean energy supplies across strategic markets, informed by current operational expertise and with a focus on community values. A highly-experienced development team concentrates on a clean energy strategy utilizing combined-cycle natural gas, and wind- and solar-powered generation to meet growing demand in high load areas across North America. Visit http://www.cpv.com/.
Founded in 1980, Second Wind Inc. advances the use of wind data to make wind energy more profitable for owners, painless for operators and practical for consumers. Key products include: Nomad® data logger and tower systems; Triton® sodar systems; SkyServe® satellite wind data service and Phaser® power transducers. Second Wind is headquartered in Somerville, Massachusetts, USA, and is privately held. For more information on the Triton sonic wind profiler or SkyServe satellite wind data service and Second Wind's other products, visit www.secondwind.com.
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