Wind Atlas - wind energy resources on the map of Finland
The new Finnish Wind Atlas is an important tool for estimation of the regional and local wind energy potential in Finland. The Wind Atlas contains average monthly and annual values of wind speed (m/s), potential power production (MWh) calculated for three different wind turbines (1 MW, 3 MW and 5 MW) at heights from 50 m to 400 m above sea or ground level distributed into 30 degree wind direction sectors. The detailed results are presented on interactive maps which also allow data for selected areas to be downloaded.The Wind Atlas is produced by the European state-of-the-art numerical weather forecasting model AROME (2,5x2,5 km2 grid resolution) and by the Danish Wind Application and Analysis Program WAsP (downscaling to 250x250 m2 grid at selected areas). The WAsP data is produced as monthly means without distribution into wind direction sectors for heights from 50 m to 150 m or 200 m. The WAsP Lib-files are given for each 2,5x2,5 km2 grid.
The Wind Atlas was produced by simulating the weather of 72 selected months in the past (about 5040 days á 24 h). The months for simulation were selected on the basis of statistical analyses of the ERA40 and ERA-Interim data sets. Of the months selected, 48 months represented average wind conditions for all of Finland, 12 months represented a wind "year" and 12 months represented a "less windy year".
The impact of climate change on average wind speed and wind power potential was studied on the basis of data from numerical climate change modelling. It is estimated that annual average wind speed could increase by a few per cent during the coming decades, especially as result of the lessening of sea ice in the Bothnian Bay. However, the impact of climate change has not been taken into account in the wind speed or power production values given in the Wind Atlas.
The Wind Atlas project was ordered in 2008 by the Ministry of Employment and Economy after an international tender had been held. The Wind Atlas was produced by the Finnish Meteorological Institute, with Risoe DTU as a subcontractor (WAsP Lib-file runs). Additional wind data taken at masts and towers were provided for verification of the model results by Vaisala Oyj, WPD Finland and Ålands Vindenergi Andelslag. The project was coordinated by Motiva. The Wind Atlas internet pages were made public on 25 November 2009.
The results of the Wind Atlas are based on computer models and represent average wind conditions in a certain area, not in a single geographical point. The results and actual wind conditions always differ to some extend. If the results of the Wind Atlas are used in decision making, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy and the Finnish Meteorological Institute cannot be held responsible for possible economic or other effects that using this data may cause to organizations.