Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment
Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment

Peter Kalverla

Date: 13 November 2019
Time: 11:00 - 12:30
Location: Aula, building 362, Gen. Foulkesweg 1, Wageningen

Dissertation title: 

Characterisation of offshore winds for energy applications

Group: Wageningen University, Meteorology and Air Quality
Promotor: Prof.dr. A.A.M. Holtslag 
Copromotor: Dr. G.J. Steeneveld and R.J. Ronda

Extra information:


A detailed characterization of the offshore wind field is crucial for the design, planning, and maintenance of offshore wind farms. Our knowledge about the wind climate comes from weather models and observations, but both types of data have their limitations. This thesis presents an updated evaluation of three commonly used weather models, that have all been used to construct climatological datasets. Moreover, the thesis reflects on the use of simplifications and summary statistics that are commonly used to obtain a set of ‘representative’ cases for engineering applications. It is found that especially those conditions that are frequently neglected in wind energy applications, are also the most challenging conditions for weather models. Low-level jets – wind speed maxima close to the surface – are a prime example. Over the North Sea, they are found frequently enough to leave their mark on offshore wind projects. A quest into the underlying physics illustrates the complexity of the wind field in coastal areas. Methods are proposed to better account for these conditions, both in the evaluation of model performance and in case selection for engineering studies.