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Addressing uncertainties in Offshore Wind planning


Future offshore wind project installation often requires key planning decisions to be made under severe uncertainty due to limited data. These uncertainties complicate the decision-making process. 

Since 2017, through two interdisciplinary projects, a Durham Energy Institute research team has developed a new methodology for both long-term investment and short-term operations planning for a more robust approach toward risk-informed planning decisions for future wind farm developments.

In the EPSRC-led HOME-Offshore (EP/P009743/1) project, our team developed new methods for including inherent uncertainty in reliability data applied to short-term operations planning decisions in far offshore wind farms.

Meanwhile, in parallel to this project, research was undertaken through an ORE Catapult-sponsored PhD research project to develop a novel investment planning tool to support future offshore wind transmission developments considering severe uncertainty due to limited data. The PhD project outcomes showed the benefits of applying advanced statistical methods in this setting to handle uncertainty, particularly their ability to enable and make better risk-informed decisions. 

Consequently, we are now working on a follow-on research project with ORE Catapult to bring together the planning methods from both previous projects to create an integrated planning platform.

Furthermore, we will bring these methods forward to the wider offshore wind stakeholder community.


University student
This research is developing our understanding of handling uncertainty when planning future offshore wind farms, which ultimately supports the decarbonisation of energy.

Dr Henna Bains, project researcher,
Durham University Engineering Department