Iberdrola Installs Floating LiDAR Sensor to Collect Data Off the Coast of Brazil

(Image credit: Iberdrola)

Iberdrola, through its Brazilian subsidiary Neoenergia, took an important step towards advancing studies into the development of offshore wind energy generation. Neoenergia has just installed the floating LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensor to collect data on wind and sea characteristics in an area on the north coast of Rio de Janeiro. This is the first time that a company has used an internationally certified system in Brazil with maximum performance rating (level three), which allows for greater data accuracy and reliability.

The novelty was presented during the Brazil Offshore Wind Summit in Rio de Janeiro. The LiDAR is protected inside a buoy almost three meters in diameter. Among other functions, the sensor is capable of remotely measuring, using laser beams, the speed and direction of the wind, based on the movement of air particles, in ranges ranging from 10 to 300 meters in height.

It is also possible to obtain information related to sea currents, wave aspects, sea water temperature, pressure and humidity, among other references. The set of devices is almost 7.5 meters high, from the base of the keel to the tip of the antenna, and also has solar plate modules, among other resources, to function. With LiDAR, Neoenergia will have access, via satellite, to specific reports on wind and sea conditions in the region, with data transmitted in real time over the internet.

It took 10 hours to transport the floating sensor from the Porto do Açu pier, in the municipality of São João da Barra (RJ), to the installation site on the high seas, approximately 40 kilometers from the coast. The operation was carried out by Fugro BR, a global reference in measurement services for wind resources and ocean parameters.

Neoenergia also had the logistical support of Prumo Logística, a holding company controlled by EIG and responsible for the development of Porto do Açu, with which the company signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in 2022, for research related to offshore wind energy generation projects in the region.

Marcelo Lopes, director of Hydraulics and Offshore at Neoenergia, highlights that the country needs to develop smart and sustainable energy solutions to stimulate a new model of industrialization from clean sources. “With the latest generation floating equipment, we are moving towards a new reality for the renewable energy sector. We believe that the process of transforming the Brazilian production chain requires the association of sustainability with innovation,” he stated.

Regarding the development of offshore wind generation in the country, the executive highlights that “in the regulation of future area auctions, it is necessary to consider selective criteria so as not to burden the source at the beginning of its development.” According to Marcelo Lopes, this is the way to promote the industry in the future and attract the supply chain, which will result in source competitiveness, with gains in scale and technological development.

Neoenergia has been contributing to the promotion of the clean energy sector in the country with partnerships aimed at promoting new technologies to offer innovative solutions. Currently, the company has 4 GW of installed generation capacity, 88% of which is renewable energy.

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