Modelling the impact of future offshore wind farm developments on the regional weather and wind resource

There is currently 18GW of offshore wind energy installed in Europe. To achieve the European Commission’s target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, an estimated increase to 400-450 GW is required. The requirements of high wind resource, and restrictions of planning permission, water depth and marine conservation mean that Offshore development will likely be clustered in certain geographical areas (e.g. the UK coastal waters and the German Bight). However, the wind industry does not understand the atmospheric implications of increasing the density of future wind farm developments. Will the high density construction of future projects fundamentally alter the regional wind or weather climate?  

This project will require the student to implement a wind farm parameterization in a numerical weather model in order to study different scenarios of future Offshore wind farm energy development and the resulting impact on energy yield.


Figure 1: A projection of the North Sea in 2050 with an installed wind farm capacity of 450GW.