The Quest for Availability – is it worth it? GL Garrad Hassan benchmarking delivers new insights for projects in operation
Hamburg/Germany, 1 June 2012 – Maximizing the availability of every wind turbine has long been the idealistic goal for the North American wind industry – the assumption being that there is a correlation between optimum availability and financial return. New benchmarking studies by renewable energy consultancy GL Garrad Hassan, show, however, that this is not always necessarily the case. In her presentation ‘What is the Cost of Availability?’ at AWEA WINDPOWER 2012 in Atlanta next week, Cathy Syme of GL Garrad Hassan will demonstrate the relationship between availability, operating cost and contribution margin.
“Historically many wind farm owners have focused primarily on turbine availability and, as a result, risked missing significant opportunities to improve their margins, “ says Cathy Syme. “Our benchmarking studies over the last five years have shown that spending money on increasing availability does not necessarily lead to a corresponding financial benefit. The real opportunities for improved operational and financial performance tend to present themselves through the collection and analysis of data focused on the interaction between availability, efficiency and wind resource, and their combined impact on revenue and costs.”
Using many years of operational data gathered through the course of its consulting work, GL Garrad Hassan conducts benchmarking of projects on a per turbine or per MWh basis. The benchmarking covers performance, availability and costs, and the sample data take into account a variety of factors, such as the technologies in use and regional profiles of the installations. These benchmarking studies have already dispelled a number of wind industry myths: firstly, that when a wind farm is meeting its budgetary requirements it is also performing well; secondly, that spending money on increasing a turbine’s availability is always the smartest thing to do financially; and finally, that simply gathering a lot of wind farm data does not by itself lead to a greater understanding of wind farm performance.
Further GL Garrad Hassan presentations at AWEA WINDPOWER 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia:
Modeling Stable Thermal Stratification and Its Impact on Wind Flow Over Topography Speaker: James Bleeg, GL Garrad Hassan Date: Monday, 4 June 2012, 1:30 – 3:00 pm Room: B312 Georgia World Congress Center
The Application of Regional Tall-Tower Telemetry for Enhanced Short-Term Wind Power Speaker: Craig Collier, GL Garrad Hassan Date: Wednesday, 6 June 2012, 8:30 – 10:00 am Room: B314 Georgia World Congress Center
Please visit GL Garrad Hassan at AWEA WINDPOWER 2012 conference and exhibition in Atlanta, Georgia at booth 5701 in Hall B.
GL Garrad Hassan media contact at AWEA WINDPOWER 2012: Steffi Goessling, firstname.lastname@example.org, mobile +49 162 1357745.
About GL Garrad Hassan
GL Garrad Hassan is one of the world’s largest dedicated renewable energy consultancies and a recognised technical authority on the subject. It offers independent technical and engineering services, products, and training courses to the onshore and offshore wind, wave, tidal and solar sectors. Although the GL Garrad Hassan name is new, the company has a rich heritage. It is borne of the integration of specialist companies that, united, form the renewable energy consulting division of the GL Group. GL Garrad Hassan is a consulting company; it has no equity stake in any device or project. This rule of operation is central to its philosophy, something which sets it apart from many of its competitors. For further information, please visit www.gl-garradhassan.com