Wind prediction and potential power

Posted to Maps  |  Tags: , , ,  |  Nathan Yau

As we use up current energy resources, it grows more important to look to alternative energy sources. Wind is one potential area, but the problem is that one has to know where it’s windy enough — now and in the future — to justify the cost of building the structures to harness the energy. It’s freakin’ wind, and variability is all over the place.

Project Ukko is an effort to make wind research predictions accessible to those who need such information. The visualization component by Moritz Stefaner, in collaboration with Future Everything and BSC, shows a number of wind factors around the world.

Lines on the map represent three things at once. Opacity shows the strength of prediction based on historical data, width represents wind speed, and angle plus color represents predicated change in wind speed. Select any line for more information on a specific area, which includes a range of possible outcomes instead of just a worthless mean or median.

Really nice, and I imagine it should be quite useful for those in the wind industry. For the rest of us, it’s fun to look and poke at.

Summary of the project in the video below:

Also, find out more on Moritz’s design process on his site. [Thanks, Moritz]

Favorites

The Most Unisex Names in US History

Moving on from the most trendy names in US history, let’s look at the most unisex ones. Some names have …

Shifting Incomes for American Jobs

For various occupations, the difference between the person who makes the most and the one who makes the least can be significant.

Interactive: When Do Americans Leave For Work?

We don’t all start our work days at the same time, despite what morning rush hour might have you think.

Reviving the Statistical Atlas of the United States with New Data

Due to budget cuts, there is no plan for an updated atlas. So I recreated the original 1870 Atlas using today’s publicly available data.