Decision Support System for Wind Farm Installation Using Bipolar Analysis

Decision Support System for Wind Farm Installation Using Bipolar Analysis

Yasmina Bouzarour-Amokrane, Ayeley P. Tchangani, François Pérès
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8222-1.ch001
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The necessity to control and reduce the negative impact of human activities on environment and life quality along with technology progress in renewable energy in general and wind energy in particular render it possible today to consider wind energy projects on a large scale. Developing wind energy on a large scale however raises other problems such as choosing an adequate site to settle a wind farm where many other issues such technical feasibility and performance levels, visual pollution, economic and social concerns, etc. must be addressed. Such decisions usually involve many parameters and necessitate the collaboration of many stakeholders. In this context, this chapter proposes an approach based on the concept of bipolar analysis through Benefit Opportunity Cost and Risk (BOCR) analysis, which permits one to address correctly a Group Decision-Making Problem (GDMP) to build a decision support system in order to assist the wind farm installation process.
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Renewable energy is to play a larger role in providing electricity due to its existence over wide geographical areas, in contrast to other energy sources, which are concentrated in a limited number of countries. Rapid deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency is resulting in significant energy security, climate change mitigation, and economic benefits (Executive Summary Energy Technology Perspectives 2012. Pathways to a Clean Energy System, 2012).

At national level, at least 30 nations around the world already have renewable energy contributing to more than 20% of energy supply. National renewable energy markets are projected to continue to grow strongly in the coming decade and beyond (Renewables 2013: Global Status Report, 2013).

Among renewable energy, the wind power is an energy that does not require fuel and which does not generate greenhouse gas and toxic wastes. It helps to maintain the air quality without polluting the soil and without overexploiting them (only 2% of the soil is required). Potentially harmful, wind energy can however cause noise and visual disturbances that come into consideration when choosing wind farm installation. The location of a wind farm must consider several criteria including its impact on wildlife and wind speed for instance.

The Wind power is growing at the rate of 30% annually and a worldwide installed capacity had reached 254 GW, at the end of 2012 (World Wind Energy Association [WWEA]. Half-year report. Technical report, 2012). So far, 72 countries own wind power for commercial use, 22 countries have an installed capacity able to deliver more than 1 GW (Wu, Li, Ba, & Wang, 2013).

To achieve such performance it is required to simultaneously consider technological, environmental and political challenges related to the process of matching existing electricity generation capacities with wind energy (Pinson, 2013).

Due to the complexity of the socio-economic environment and the rapid technological evolution, a post-evaluation study on wind farm planning is essential to optimize management ability and minimize losses. For example, ignoring the importance of management has exposed China to severe overcapacity and overproducing power equipment problems since 2009. Even now, China produces 20GW of unrequired energy (Wu et al., 2013).

Post-evaluation study on wind farm planning consists in: evaluating the planning work, the guiding ideology and optimization of general design plan, judging of design, the feasibility of advanced technology and the accuracy of budget estimates as for example the selection of turbines for commercial-scale wind farms considering varying wind conditions (Chowdhury, Zhang, Messac, & Castillo, 2013; Montoya, Manzano-Agugliaro, López-Márquez, Hernández-Escobedo, & Gil, 2014). A set of selection indicators are proposed in literature in order to evaluate wind farm planning such as: wind resources, wind farm sites, equipment, policies, management, uncertainty factors, power demand and production, economics, impact on visual environment, connection with power grid and road, load-bearing capacity of soil, restrictions regarding the existence of prohibited places, varying wind velocities and directions, etc. (Wu et al., 2013 ;Rahbari, Vafaeipour, Fazelpour, Feidt, & Rosen, 2014).

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