Hebrides coast sunset

Wind monitoring update

An important part of the design and development process for Spiorad na Mara includes the need to better understand the wind profile on the Isle of Lewis, and to conduct an in-depth study on the west coast. This will build an understanding of the full set of weather conditions – not just averages, but the extremes, gusts and storms.  The data gathered will be instrumental in the design of the Spiorad na Mara wind farm.

During October 2023, the project deployed an offshore Floating LiDAR , to collect wind resource data, within the project site area. This data is being collected over a period of 24 months.

With the Isle of Lewis being an area of very high wind and metocean activity, in order to ensure periods of extreme weather are captured and well understood, we plan to install two additional temporary wind measuring devices, on land and near to the coast – a light detection and ranging (LiDAR) weather station and a Meteorological (Met) Mast.

A planning application (reference 24-00103-PPD) was submitted for a LiDAR weather station and registered on 18th March 2024. This is a small, portable device, approximately 1m3 in size, which can be deployed almost anywhere, even within a small garden area (see photo).

Subject to securing planning permission, the LiDAR could be deployed by early summer, and is expected to record meteorological data for up to a maximum of 12 months.

Separately, it is anticipated that a planning application for a Meteorological Mast could be submitted during May/June and further information will be made available at this time.

Together, the three devices will measure different aspects of the wind and complement each other, providing a comprehensive and broad set of wind measurement data. 

Onshore LiDAR - photo courtesy of ZX LiDARs
Example of the onshore LiDAR. Photo courtesy of ZX LiDARs.
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