Research project WindRamp

Watching the wind to predict grid bottlenecks and potentially using offshore wind energy to support operational grid management and trading processes



If wind power is to be optimally integrated into energy systems, wind speeds have to be predicted reliably. To improve the forecasting of “wind ramps” (these are drastic changes in wind speed within the space of half an hour), the WindRamp project (funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action) is researching the use of laser technology to observe wind conditions.

Research project WindRamp



June 2020 bis June 2023

Funded by

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action

Project participants

  • University of Oldenburg – Zentrum für Windenergieforschung (ForWind)
  • Institute of Networked Energy Systems
  • energy & meteo systems
  • Abacus Laser
  • Metek Meteorologische Messtechnik
  • TenneT TSO
  • EWE Trading
  • wpd offshore solutions

In order to integrate renewable energy sources into existing energy systems in the best possible way, predictions of the output of wind farms and photovoltaic (PV) plants are made so grid operators can plan ahead for the power fluctuations. However, so far it has not been possible to accurately forecast changes that occur at short notice – such as “wind ramps”. A wind ramp is the name given to a drastic change in wind speed within the space of less than 30 minutes. These sudden and unpredictable fluctuations in energy supply can have an impact on the power grid and pose problems for grid operators. For this reason, the WindRamp project is looking for new ways to anticipate these wind ramps.

So far, computer-based weather models have been used to make these forecasts. They can predict expected wind levels over time ranges from several hours to several days. Forecasting wind ramps, however, requires measurements at local level, which will be recorded with the help of laser technology. So-called lidar (light detection and ranging) devices will be used in the project to measure distances and wind speeds using laser pulses before the wind hits the wind farm. The measurements will be logged at the Nordergründe wind farm and used to develop an observation-based forecasting system for wind levels. The prediction method devised will then be integrated into existing model-based forecasting processes. However, it must be borne in mind that wind rarely flows in a uniform pattern and can get stronger at higher altitudes; in addition, the characteristics of the wind field can still change between the measuring point and the wind farm. Besides the improved forecast obtained using the lidar devices, it is hoped that their range and resolution can also be improved, and the time horizon of predictions increased.

The scientists at the Institute of Networked Energy Systems are chiefly responsible for assessing this forecasting method in terms of its relevance for the power system, focusing specifically on how offshore wind energy is integrated into the grid and the market. They are also working on improving the forecast using a calibration method and are thus helping to produce the lidar-based ultra-short-term forecasts for the Nordergründe wind farm.


Energy Meteorology

Research Group
Institute of Networked Energy Systems
Carl-von-Ossietzky-Str. 15, 26129 Oldenburg