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Project Ukko

A new climate service for wind energy

Project Ukko combines cutting edge climate science and data design to communicate seasonal wind predictions and climate variability for the energy sector. A first of its kind, Project Ukko is a Future Everything and BSC project for EUPORIAS, with data visualisation by Moritz Stefaner.

Contributors:
Moritz Stefaner (Data visualisation)
Drew Hemment (Project Director)

How can advanced ability to predict future events reshape our world and the future of sustainable resources?

Understanding future wind conditions can be a crucial enabler for clean energy and climate change resilience. The natural environment, human health, infrastructure, food security, access to fresh water… these are all vulnerable to variations in climate. And so, detailed weather predictions can help answer the urgent need to adapt to extreme weather events.

Combining climate science with data visualisation, Project Ukko forecasts wind conditions over the coming months and seasons, breaking new ground in the effort to improve the resilience of society to climate variability and change.

While climate change has pushed society to develop renewable energy, this can be less reliable than conventional energy. To help with this, advances in climate science are creating unprecedented potential to provide weather forecasts and predictions over longer periods of time. But this information often presents as dense and complex datasets, making it difficult to interpret and use in day-to-day decision making. In Project Ukko, we brought artists, designers and climate scientists together to tackle the challenge of creating useful and usable climate services from thousands of datasets. Moritz Stefaner also joined the team, developing a visualisation to demonstrate the potential of advanced climate predictions in a beautiful and accessible interface.

Project Ukko presents a novel way to spot patterns in wind predictions around the world, meaning it can be used to explore future wind farm power output or locate regions likely to see extreme fluctuations in wind speed. In this way, Project Ukko supports wind farm operators and wind energy traders in making decisions like when to plan maintenance or where to invest in wind farms.

Project Ukko is a FutureEverything and Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) project for EUPORIAS (Europe’s flagship project supporting the uptake of climate forecast services, funded by the EU 7th Framework Programme and led by the Met Office).

Data visualisation by Moritz Stefaner.

Based on ECMWF seasonal predictions by RESILIENCE.

Wind power capacity data generously provided by thewindpower.net.