February 23, 2010
Release of global solar dataset marks final milestone of initiative
SEATTLE, Wash.—3TIER® today announced the completion of its REmapping the World™ initiative, which was launched in March 2008 to address the biggest barrier to global renewable energy adoption—the lack of reliable information regarding resource potential and availability. With today's release of a global solar map and dataset, the company has completed its unprecedented goal of identifying and mapping the world's wind and solar resources using a globally consistent methodology.
"3TIER's aim in developing these maps is to help accelerate the adoption of renewable energy around the world by providing a blueprint for development," said Kenneth Westrick, founder and CEO of 3TIER, the global leader in renewable energy information services.
"The creation of these maps is part of a larger effort to build a renewable energy information services platform which will provide customers with on-demand access to 3TIER's massive datasets for wind and solar resources," said Westrick. "Access to this critical data will enable global decision-makers and organizations to look at wind and solar potential on a regional scale and help maximize the value of renewable resources while mitigating the risks of their inherent variability."
The newly released global solar map and dataset is based on 10 to 13 years of half-hourly, high-resolution visible satellite imagery collected from nine different satellites, dispersed across the globe and covering the entire surface of the earth. Satellite imagery was processed using a uniform methodology based upon a combination of in-house and peer-reviewed research documents supported by the global atmospheric science community.
"This global solar map and dataset offers a combination of resolution and spatial extent not offered by anyone else," said Dr. Bart Nijssen, senior vice president of technology of 3TIER. "To provide the most accurate solar data available, we produced a satellite observation-based dataset because the traditional numerical weather prediction methods used for wind climatology do a poor job of modeling cloud cover, a major factor for determining solar radiation."
At a resolution 3 to 30 times higher than any other publicly available data source, 3TIER's global solar map and dataset leverage several in-house improvements to provide the following features:
- Global coverage between 50° S and 60° N
- Spatial resolution of 2 arc-minutes (approximately 3 km)
- Hourly values of GHI, DNI, and DIF extending back 10 to 13 years
"This dataset provides the in-depth solar irradiance information essential to developers, financiers, and governments for targeting the best regions in the world for development," said Westrick. "Our solar resource technology provides the critical data to make renewable power a viable alternative and will be increasingly important in areas where solar data only exists at coarse resolution and inferior quality or is simply unavailable."
As part of the REmapping the World initiative, 3TIER also produced a 5 km resolution global wind map and dataset, based upon proven techniques and the application of advanced numerical weather prediction models, which accurately and consistently diagram wind spatial and temporal variability.
To learn more about the datasets and 3TIER products that offer dynamic access to resource information, visit: http://www.3tier.com/products/.
Click here to download the full press release.