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World first buoy tech from Canada for testing offshore wind resource deployed in Taiwan

National Cheng Kung University deploys AXYS Technologies’ WindSentinel wind resource assessment buoy in Taiwan strait to measure Asian offshore wind resource for first time

AXYS Technologies said this is the world's first wind resource assessment buoy capable of gathering wind data offshore at turbine hub-height and across the blade span

The world's first wind resource assessment buoy, which has been developed in Canada, has been deployed in the Taiwan Strait. Taiwan's National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) has deployed the WindSentinel wind resource assessment buoy, which is manufactured by Canadian firm AXYS Technologies, in the strait of the Republic of China island.

The university, based in southern Taiwan, has launched the floating LiDAR, an offshore wind resource assessment buoy at Tainan Hydraulics Laboratory. The development from the Republic of China state makes it the first time laser wind sensing technology has been used to measure Asia offshore wind resources.

Reo Philips, AXYS director of operations, said: "This is the world's first wind resource assessment buoy capable of gathering wind data offshore at turbine hub-height and across the blade span.

"Here in Taiwan, you have one of the best resources in Asia, possibly in the world, in the Taiwan Strait," he added. "You also have some of the best technology as recognised as a global leader in high-tech industry with very strong economy."

NCKU president Hwung-Hweng Hwung, said: "This will be the first time that laser wind sensing technology will be used on a floating platform to measure Asian offshore wind resources. It is the Asia No. 1 and world No.4 of floating LiDAR applications in wind profiler measurement at sea."

"The WindSentinel will provide extended season, real-time in-water data using the most advanced wind testing equipment," added Professor Ta-Hui Lin, the director of Master program of national science and technology program-energy (NSTPE) on offshore wind power.

Lin said, "The flexibility and mobility of the buoy and significant cost and time savings compared to constructing a meteorological tower with traditional anemometer instrumentation will provide a new level of highly mobile research capacity that is able to explore the potential of possible future offshore wind development on the Taiwan Strait."

The news from National Cheng Kung University follows other western technology being used to move forward renewable energy in Taiwan over the last six months. In December 2012, the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Scotland announced an international collaboration agreement to develop a marine energy test facility on the island.