10th November 2021 – Pioneering laser anemometry in the wind industry

Michael Harris gave a talk

    • The wind energy industry forms an important element in the battle to reduce carbon emissions. Because the power of the wind depends on the cube of its speed, it follows that accurate wind speed measurements are crucially important to the industry. Until fairly recently these measurements were carried out with cup anemometers mounted on tall masts. This talk will describe the development of laser anemometry (lidar) techniques that are now becoming widely accepted for a variety of tasks; this is contributing to reduced cost and greater efficiency in the development and operation of modern wind farms. Malvern has played a significant part in the early and continuing development of wind lidar going right back to the late 1970s at RSRE.
    • Michael Harris obtained a degree in physics in 1980 from Oxford University, and a PhD in Atomic Physics from Newcastle University. He settled in Malvern after spending time as a researcher at the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics, Boulder, Colorado.  Until 2008 he was Technical/Team Leader for Remote Sensing at QinetiQ Malvern, and is currently Director of Science at ZX Lidars (formerly ZephIR Lidar), where he continues to develop and promote laser anemometry for use in the wind energy industry.