New government strategy makes solar and wind monitoring data public for the first time – pv magazine Australia


In an unconventional attempt to attract large-scale renewable developments, the Queensland government has arranged for generally highly confidential solar and wind monitoring data to be made public for the first time through Fulcrum 3D’s technology platforms.

Economic Development Queensland is working with Australian resource monitoring company Fulcrum3D to, for the first time, release data on solar and wind resources as part of a strategy to encourage the development of large-scale renewable energy in the north Queensland coast. Specifically, the government wants to see its 6,355 hectares of freehold land at Abbot Point, just north of Bowen, transformed by major projects to become the Salisbury Plains industrial area.

The technological partner of the project is Fulcrum3D and uses its flagship portable monitoring unit Sodar, equipped with additional pyranometers, with this data made available thanks to its 24-hour FlightDECK data management system.

“We have been monitoring the downloads and they are certainly viewed and viewed multiple times,” said Fulcrum3D Founder and CEO Colin Bonner. pv magazine Australia.

“From our perspective, it’s fantastic to see proactive government strategy and policies,” he said. “It’s sort of the lifeblood of the industry,” Bonner added, noting that in the 10 years since its founding, corporate governments have tended to be quite slow on policy reform. and adoption of renewable energies.

While the 24-month program is still ongoing (data monitoring began in November 2020), Bonner said so far it has shown “high potential” for wind and solar projects.


Fulcrum3D’s Sodar product launched the company in 2011 and works much like sonar on a submarine, diffusing the sound of thermal turbulence into the atmosphere by a pulse sent every two seconds.

With the rise of wind-solar colocation, Bonner said most developers are also choosing to add a few pyranometers to monitor solar irradiance on-site, with the company using Germany’s Kipp & Zonen’s SMP11.

Fulcrum3D Sodar Unit


“The object of the game here is to reduce [yield] uncertain, ”Bonner said. He noted that there are all kinds of ways to collect solar irradiation data, with satellite data typically having a margin of error of between 5% and 10%. Using an on-site pyranometer reduces this uncertainty to between 3 and 5%.

Each of the Sodar units collects 5 GB to 10 GB of data each month, with a large part of the Fulcrum3D offer and then the cyber infrastructure that manages these huge data sets.

This data is generally very confidential, of course, and is only seen by the developers and their technical consultancies. This is the first time the company has worked with a government to make it public – although Bonner said it likely won’t be the last.

The model is attracting government interest

“We are in talks with other ministries in different states,” he said, although he was unable to give more details on who they were precisely. “But certainly other government agencies [are] explore a model to demonstrate that the land they manage or access has good resources.

He described the Salisbury Plains project as a great opportunity. “Because it’s the government and they already have land rights, they’re trying to attract developers to this area. So it’s in their best interest to make it public… it’s almost relying on the ethics of renewable energy zones where they try to encourage developers to work together to have a more efficient process.

Queensland Economic Development has not been able to give pv magazine no indication as to whether their strategy has attracted developers to date, classifying the information as sensitive.

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