Remote sensing observations used in offshore wind energy are described in three parts: ground-based techniques and applications, airborne techniques and applications, and satellite-based techniques and applications. Ground-based remote sensing of winds is relevant, in particular, for new large wind turbines where meteorological masts do not enable observations across the rotor-plane, i.e., at 100 to 200 m above ground level. Light detection and ranging (LiDAR) and sound detection and ranging (SoDAR) offer capabilities to observe winds at high heights. Airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) used for ocean wind mapping provides the basis for detailed offshore wind farm wake studies and is highly useful for development of new wind retrieval algorithms from C-, L-, and X-band data. Satellite observations from SAR and scatterometer are used in offshore wind resource estimation. SAR has the advantage of covering the coastal zone where most offshore wind farms are located. The number of samples from scatterometer is relatively high and the scatterometer-based estimate on wind resources appears to agree well with coastal offshore meteorological observations in the North Sea. Finally, passive microwave ocean winds have been used to index the potential offshore wind power production, and the results compare well with observed power production (mainly land-based) covering nearly two decades for the Danish area.
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