When energy meteorologists make false predictions, it can have an expensive impact on short-term trading on the energy exchange, for instance in cases when much less wind or solar power is available than was forecast and demand exceeds the supply.
The expansion of volatile renewable sources of energy brings uncertainty to the power supply, while the grid operators’ effort and, subsequently, the costs to keep the grid frequency stable at 50.2 hertz increase. That is why exact forecasts of weather conditions and the yield of PV and wind power plants are crucial. The amount of renewable electricity flowing into the grid is already so high, that grid operators need to know what to expect – the more accurately, the better.
The same applies to everyone who markets their renewable electricity directly, because balancing out shortfalls is expensive. Solar forecasts are also crucial for the energy management of buildings.
Meteorological services such as the Swiss Meteotest AG thus provide special data services that predominantly consist of irradiation and temperature data and can be integrated into the systems’ respective monitoring and controlling software. Thanks to artificial intelligence (AI), these forecasts are becoming more and more accurate. “Machine learning has been playing a crucial role in the irradiation forecast for a long time,” Jan Remund, Head of the Department for Energy and Climate at Meteotest, explains.
As so often, the devil is in the details. Ash and dust particles or grains of sand present in the atmosphere can unravel the best forecasts, as they decrease solar irradiation and thus photovoltaic yields. The same goes for snow covering the modules. meteocontrol GmbH also relies on machine learning and neural networks to make their solar power forecasts for individual systems or network areas as precise as possible.
Precise grid forecasts and real-time projections can help to avoid having to curtail renewable energy systems. An optimized network management can also help to reduce the use of conventional generation systems.
You will learn more about solutions for various use cases from a whole range of suppliers of weather and yield forecasts, grid connection and analysis software at EM-Power Europe 2023 from June 14–16 in Munich. The EM-Power Forum in Hall B5 will dedicate a session to Forecasting & Monitoring on June 14.
A detailed article on the role of forecasting and artificial intelligence in grid stability and control of distributed loads can be found here.