The 10 megawatt Sancton Hill Wind Farm has been fully financed according to REG Windpower using a 10 year non-recourse debt facility from the Co-Op Bank. According to company statements, the wind regime was analysed on-site through a relatively novel approach, which utilized long-term reference data from short 16 metre met masts combined with a short ZephIR lidar deployment. ZephIR provides measurements up to 200 metres from installed level and importantly down to just 10 metres to provide on-site correlations with the short masts.
The ‘short mast + ZephIR’ methodology was adopted by REG Windpower in 2009 when a strategic approach to wind monitoring across the company’s portfolio of sites currently totaling some 11 operational wind farms and over 900MW in the pipeline, resulted in the purchase of three ZephIR lidars. The technology was used to created a P90 Energy Yield Analysis report that was accepted for use in refinancing the project.
REG Windpower’s Wind Assessment Manager, Simon Pipkin, said, “ZephIR was deployed on site with a low-cost, short mast for just six months and delivered the data we needed to reach financial close for Sancton Hill. This approach allowed us to start monitoring quickly without the need of a tall mast – which themselves encounter significant planning issues now – and deliver bankable, finance-grade wind data to the Co-Op Bank to take the site forward in a timely, cost effective and safe manner. The wind speed recorded by the ZephIR deployed varied from the mast by just 0.9 percent during the correlation period which is far better than often found when comparing two cup anemometers.”
An additional site, Orchard End Wind Farm in Lancashire, England will be financed using the short mast + ZephIR methodology in the near future and a further three to four wind farms are expected to follow.