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DateSunday, February 28, 2021

Blowing Wind into Open Data

NovaUCD Company BrightWind Launches BrightHub, a New Open Data Platform for Irish Wind and Solar Resource Data

Brightwind launch BrightHub, a new open data platform which could help Ireland to reach its renewable energy targets.

BrightWind, a renewable energy consultancy that specialises in the provision of energy resource assessments, data analytics and tools development, has announced the launch of BrightHub, a new open data platform which could help Ireland to reach its renewable energy targets.


The BrightHub platform provides researchers with open access to wind and solar resource datasets, thus enabling them to better understand Ireland’s energy resources. The datasets can be used to improve day-ahead forecasting of wind energy on the electrical system thus allowing more wind to be utilised instead of fossil fuels.


Located in NovaUCD, BrightWind, which is now co-owned by UK renewables and energy consultancy Everoze, has also announced the launch of version 2.0 of its open-source data analysis library. This library facilitates co-operation and research activities within the renewable energy industry by simplifying and standardising the access to quality wind and solar data.


Co-founder Stephen Holleran said; “BrightHub and the BrightWind open-source library, the only fully fledged open-source library for wind data processing in the world, will empower wind analysts and researchers to better understand the wind in Ireland."


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Holleran added; "The Python library in particular gives wind analysts across the world the tools to advance their work practices and perform vital research that is currently not feasible. We are keen supporters of the open-source philosophy as we've seen huge benefits in the software industry which we aim to apply to the wind industry.”


The launch of BrightHub marks the completion of a €162,000 grant awarded to the company in 2020 by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) to develop the platform. John McCann, Programme Manager, SEAI, said; “SEAI was delighted to provide funding to BrightWind through its research and development programme which supports innovations that contribute to Ireland’s low carbon future. The BrightHub platform will facilitate the wind and solar energy sector by providing access to improved wind and solar energy resource data and analysis. This platform will in particular provide a resource to small wind and solar energy players such as community projects and renewable energy self-consumers, who can find it difficult to access good quality wind and solar resource data and analysis tools.”


Among the organisations currently contributing data to the BrightHub platform are; Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT), SEAI along with Wind Energy Direct, and Greencoat Renewables.


Raymond Byrne, a researcher at the Centre for Renewable Energy, DkIT, said; “High quality long-term wind resource data sets can be cost and time prohibitive for researchers to produce, or can come with confidentiality constraints when acquired from the wind industry. BrightHub, an open access platform of wind resource data, at all scales, will greatly benefit the research community in carrying out impactful research in a timely manner.”


Ben Brooks, Asset Manager at Greencoat Renewables, the owner of 20 wind farms in Ireland, said; “We are more than happy to share historical wind resource data from some of our operational sites. We see this as a win-win as the learnings from the resulting research will help accelerate the roll-out of renewable energy infrastructure. Our commitment to a sustainable future for the planet and our society extends beyond our investments and the clean energy they generate.” 


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