buoy is the result of a research project to develop a cost-effective
alternative to fixed met. masts. Floating LIDAR systems are expected to only
cost 10 to 20% of a conventional measuring mast, suggesting a potential to make
a considerable contribution to cutting development costs of offshore wind
trial is part of the world's largest validation trials of floating LIDAR, that
were recently commenced by the Offshore Wind Accelerator which is a research
initiative from the UK Carbon Trust involving the major offshore wind farm
operators. The first trial conducted in 2014 was supported by the research and
development programme FLOW (Far and Large Offshore Wind), funded by the Dutch
Ministry of Economic Affairs.
EOLOS Buoy is a fully autonomous and all-in-one system which can accurately
measure wind, wave and current. It is based on a structural skeleton and
mooring system to provide the necessary robustness to withstand the rough
environment of the North Sea whilst at the same time reducing the weight of the
system," commented Rajai Aghabi, CEO at EOLOS Floating Lidar Solutions.
LIDAR buoy has four individual floats attached to the corners of the skeleton
structure that provide the buoyancy and help to ensure good stability in rough
seas. Enclosing the skeleton framework is a tapered compartment that provides a
watertight environment to house all the electronic measuring equipment as well
as the power supply equipment. The outside of this compartment has solar panel
attached to provide some of the power whilst wind generators are attached to
three of the corners with the fourth corner being dedicated to a communications
mast. The mooring system on the buoy ensures that it lies in the same relative direction
to wind in most conditions to ensure that the wind generators maximise their
provide a 48 hour back up in the event of calm and overcast conditions with
sensors monitoring the power management. Data is sent to the shore via the
Iridium satellite system and can also be accessed by Wi-fi from a nearby boat.
The LIDAR system is mounted at the centre of the casing.
validation trials compared the data measured by the buoy to that measured from
the tall Met Mast that is located some 45 miles off the Dutch coast in 26
metres of water and the results showed a close correlation between the two.