New space tool to help energy planners

The Institute for Environmental Analytics has developed a new tool to help developers better understand potential assets of renewable generation

People using Renewable Energy Space Analytics Tool on laptops. Photograph: Institute for Environmental Analytics
The project has been funded by the UK Space Agency International Partnership Programme (IPP). Photograph: Institute for Environmental Analytics

A new space analytics tool has been developed by the Institute for Environmental Analytics (IEA) to support the move from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

The Renewable Energy Space Analytics Tool (RE-SAT) uses satellite data from a number of sources. Its features include highly detailed projections of natural resource potential, optimal location and siting information taking account of local conditions and a databank for energy-related datasets.

The use of the tool is supported by customised high-resolution weather data products derived from fragmented existing sources with advanced modelling and satellite data to fill missing gaps in the data records.

The IEA’s RE-SAT project has been creating resource maps for solar, wind, wave and ocean thermal since December 2017 to highlight “the abundance of energy available” for a particular type of renewable generation, the IEA told ENDS.

These maps are then going to be used to assess suitable locations for renewable energy installations.

Suitable locations are constrained by other factors such as local environmental conditions and specific spatial criteria such as location suitability.

It is hoped that the RE-SAT energy tool will give planners the ability to position renewable assets on a map, run those assets with location specific weather data and calculate the potential power output.

The assets currently available are for wind, solar and wave, currently being trialled in the Seychelles.

The project has been funded by the UK Space Agency International Partnership Programme (IPP) and has been developed as a proof-of-concept platform with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the government of the Seychelles.

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