Task 1.2 List of Field Campaigns

IEA Wind Task 51 Forecasting for the Weather Driven Energy System – WS Atmospheric Physics and Modelling

Helmut Frank (DWD), Irene Schicker (ZAMG), Will Shaw (PNNL)


Field measurement programs – Introduction

In IEA Wind Task 51 no experiments are made to compare Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models with observations. However, there are work packages trying to foster this comparison. Therefore, we compile a list of experiments which are particularly relevant for wind energy forecasting. We try to give a short description of the experiments and some information on the data.


List of major field experiments in different years:


2023 to 2026:

  • AIRE (Enhancing wind power production)

2021 to 2023:










2012 and older:

Helmut Frank

Helmut Frank

DWD, Deutscher Wetterdienst

    Helmut Frank
    DWD, Deutscher Wetterdienst

    Caroline Draxl

    Caroline Draxl
    National Wind Technology Center

    Will Shaw, PNNL

    Will Shaw

    Pacific North-West National Laboratory

      Co-Lead during IEA Wind Task 36
      Will Shaw
      Pacific North-West National Laboratory

      Major field experiments


      Enhancing wind power production – Advanced tools for a reliable source of energy. Understanding atmospheric impacts on wind turbines for better efficiency.

      AIRE wants to improve efficiency of the wind energy sector by studying wind flows at different altitudes and weather conditions, providing better design, durability and performance of wind turbines and wind farms. One goal is to create an open-access knowledge hub of experimental data to be widely used by the research community. It uses data from several test sites: PLOCAN of the island of Gran Canaria, ALAIZ in northern Spain, Risø in Denmark, Levenmouth off the Fife coast in Scotland.

      WMO UAS Demonstration Campaign

      The WMO Uncrewed Aircraft Systems (UAS) Demonstration Campaign (UAS-DC) aims at demonstrating the potential capability of UAS to play a role as an operational component of the WMO Integrated Global Observing System (WIGOS) under the Global Basic Observing Network (GBON). It will focus on the following aims:

      1. To demonstrate current capabilities of a range of UAS and to measure their capacity to contribute to meeting operational requirements for upper-air observations and the filling of observational gaps of the WIGOS GBON and/or RBON;
      2. To demonstrate the capacity of UAS and their data processing systems to provide data in an interoperable format ready for use by relevant applications and forecast systems;
      3. To measure, analyse and report on the impacts of UAS observations on relevant WMO application areas and forecast systems;
      4. To determine more generally and report on areas of development needed for UAS to adequately meet requirements to efficiently, economically and environmentally responsibly contribute operationally to WIGOS; and
      5. To determine and make recommendations relating to regulatory conditions imposed on UAS that impact their ability to contribute to WIGOS.

      The campaign will include three SOPs:


      The Global Blockage Effect in Offshore Wind (OWA GloBE) project took place at the Heligoland windfarm cluster in the North Sea from September 2021 to November 2023. It was designed to improve understanding of the true impact of the global blockage effect of wind farms by undertaking a first of a kind measurement campaign under real offshore conditions.

      A mini-symposium was held at the Wind Energy Science Conference in Glasgow on 24th May 2023 with the presentations at zenodo.


      The American Wake Experiment (, Fact sheet ) is an international, multi-institutional wind energy field campaign designed to answer the most pressing science questions about how individual wind turbines interact with one another and the atmosphere in a wind farm. AWAKEN will gather observational data from wind farms to validate wind power plant models and advance the industry’s understanding of how a wind farm operates. AWAKEN aims to cut the uncertainty levels of current industry tools for turbine-to-turbine wake interactions in half—or more—by producing data that will enable wind farm models to better predict future performance and wake impacts.

      The specific objective of AWAKEN is to gather high-fidelity observations of wind turbines and power plants operating in representative atmospheric conditions and then use these data to advance the understanding of wind power plant physics.
      After equipment installation is completed in 2022, researchers will collect data through 2022 and 2023. Collaborative efforts to analyze and report the data through various publications and dissemination efforts will conclude in 2024.
      AWAKEN researchers have chosen a field campaign site that borders several wind farms in Oklahoma, between Ponca City and Enid, at which they will measure wind-farm-atmosphere interactions.
      Partnership Opportunities
      This project involves researchers from NREL, Sandia National Laboratories, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
      If your organization is interested in working with world-class research institutions and getting immediate access to unique wind energy data and research results, such as wind farm control validation, please contact Patrick Moriarty.


      FESSTVaL (Field Experiment on submesoscale spatio-temporal variability in Lindenberg) is a measurement campaign initiated by the Hans-Ertel-Center for Weather Research (HErZ). It took place from 17 May to 27 August 2021 with a special observation period (SOP) from 5 June to 5 July 2021 at the Meteorological Observatory Lindenberg – Richard-Aßmann-Observatory (MOL-RAO) of the German Weatherservice (DWD) in eastern Germany. To identify the sources of sub-mesoscale variability, the measurement campaign focuses on three main aspects: atmospheric boundary layer structures, cold pools, and gusts of wind. Data can be found at at the SAMD-Archive of the CEN Integrated Climate Data CenterFESSTVaL Campaigns : ICDC : Universität Hamburg (

      Originally, the experiment had been planed for summer 2020. This was not possible due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead preparatory measurements took place in 2020 in FESST@mol (see below or FESST@mol) and FESST@HH (see below or FESST@HH).

      In order to capture phenomena at the submesoscale (500 m – 5 km), a hierarchical measurement strategy was realized. This includes wind profiling stations with a coordinated scanning strategy of several Doppler Lidars, two mobile profiler to measure thermodynamic properties of the atmosphere and precipitation, more than 100 stations with near-surface measurements of air temperature and pressure, more than 20 automatic weather stations, an X-Band radar, and a number of energy balance stations. This equipment is supplemented by the extensive ground-based remote sensing array at the MOL-RAO. Complementing to this, the added value of a citizen-science measurement network is investigated during the campaign with “Internet-of-things” based technology and low-cost sensors build and maintained by citizens.




      FESST@mol (Field Experiment on submesoscale spatio-temporal variability in Lindenberg) is a preparatory measurement campaign for FESSTVaL.

      Measurement with Doppler lidar systems to derive profile information on wind and turbulence in the Atmospheric Boundary Layer (ABL) are done as a core contribution to FESSTVaL. Instead of operating Doppler lidars at different sites around Lindenberg (as planned for FESSTVaL) measurements with eight Doppler lidar systems are performed at the boundary layer field site (GM) Falkenberg between June 01, and August 31, 2020. In addition to the two DWD instruments, two co-operation partners (KIT Campus Alpin Garmisch-Partenkirchen and the Institute for Atmospheric Physics of DLR Oberpfaffenhofen) have brought each three Doppler lidars to Falkenberg. Moreover, in July additional measurements with remotely piloted, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) are performed.

      Lidar measurements during the experiment are analysed in WESD – Spatio-temporal observations of nocturnal low-level jets and impacts on wind power production ( by Weide Luiz and Fiedler.




      FESST@HH (Field Experiment on submesoscale spatio-temporal variability in Hamburg – Cold Pools) is a preparatory measurement campaign for FESSTVaL.

      One contribution to FESSTVaL comes from the Meteorological Institute of the University of Hamburg and the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology. For 2020, the main campaign for the main FESSTVaL in Lindenberg was relocated to Hamburg, so that additional and preparatory measurements will be carried out in the city this summer. The aim is to investigate cold pools – small-scale areas of cold air below raining clouds that often arise during thunderstorms.

      NEWA – Alaiz Experiment (ALEX17)

      The Alaiz Field Campaign took place in northern Spain and finished in 2019. The Intensive Observational Period (IOP) lasted from August to December 2018. But, some mast and profiler measurements continued well into 2020. A report on the campaigne was written by Cantero et al.. The full dataset is compiled by Santos et al..

      NEW – Perdigão: flow over a double ridge

      The main field campaign of NEWA in the year 2017 took place near Perdigão in central Portugal. The Serra do Perdigão is formed by two parallel ridges with Southeast-Northwest orientation, separated by circa 1.5 km, 4 km long and 500-550 m tall at their summit. It started in December 2016 and lasted until June 2017 with an Intensive Observational Period from 1 May to 15 June 2017. 21 institutions from 8 countries in Europe and the US participated. The equipment included 50 meteorological towers, 21 scanning lidars, 7 profiling lidars, 2 Sodars, plus many other instruments (see, or, or Fernando et al. 2018).

      NEWA – Ferry Lidar Experiment

      A ship-lidar system developed by Fraunhofer IWES, i.e. a Doppler lidar device installed on a vessel and supplemented by a motion monitoring and correction unit, was deployed to measure the wind along a regular ferry route between Kiel and Kleipeda in the southern Baltic Sea from Februray to June 2017 (Gottschall et al., 2018). A model comparison benchmark was made for this ship-lidar experiment, and results were presented at the Wind Energy Science Conference 2019 in Cork by (Witha et al..

      NEWA – The coastal experiment RUNE

      The coastal experiment RUNE took place from November 2015 to February 2016 at the Danish west coast to measure offshore flow by wind lidar systems.

      NEWA – Østerild: Flow over heterogeneous roughness

      RUNE was followed by an experiment in 2016 to investigate flow over heterogeneous roughness with horizontally scanning wind lidars. This experiment took place at the DTU test station for wind turbines at Østerild in northern Jutland, Denmark.

      NEWA – Hornamossen: flow over forested rolling hills

      Flow over forested rolling hills is investigated by the experiment in Hornamossen in south-central Sweden from April to July 2016. The site includes a variety of heterogeneities in topography, land cover and forest height. Measurement are taken at a 180 m mast, several SODAR and two lidar systems.

      NEWA – Kassel forested hill experiment

      This experiment to measured flow over a forested hill from August to December 2016 in central Germany. The experiment is centered around a 200 m tall tower on the Rödeser Berg. This tower is equipped with sonic and cup anemometers at several heights. In addition up to 11 long-range WindScanners, 8 wind profilers, and another 140 m mast measure the mean flow and turbulence. A predecessor was the Kassel 2016 Experiment (Pauscher et al, 2016).

      WFIP2 – Wind Forecast Improvement Project 2

      The WFIP Wind Forecast Improvement Project 2 (WFIP 2) in Complex Flowlasted from 2015 to 2017. It aimed to improve NOAA’s short-term weather forecast models and increase understanding of physical processes such as stability, turbulence, and low-level jet that affect wind energy generation in regions of complex terrain, such as coastlines, mountains, and canyons. The experiment took place in the Columbia River Gorge area in the northwestern USA. The terrain includes mountains, canyons, and coastlines, and experiences a variety of complex flow including frontal passages, strong cross-barrier flow, mountain waves, topographic wakes, convective outflow, and marine pushes.

      An overview of WFIP2 is given by Shaw et al.. The field campaign started in October 1, 2015 and lasted 18 month until March 31, 2017. Some instruments continued to collect data after this date. Measurement instruments included Lidar, Sodar, wind profiler, surface meteorological stations, microbarographs, microwave radiometers. Partners are Vaisala, ESRL, PNNL, University of Colorado, NOAA, ARL, NREL. Data is availabel at a2e wfip2. There are 289 datasets on 17.9 million files and 206.9 TB of data. Access to a lot of data is free after registration at

      WFIP – WFIP Wind Forecast Improvement Project

      WFIP was the predecessor of WFIP2. Measurements were taken from September 2011 to September 2012 in the central USA. For more information see Wilzcak et al. (2015) or the Final Report.


      Offshore Boundary-Layer EXperiment at Fino1 (OBLEX-F1) took place from May 2015 to September 2016 in the North Sea at the German wind energy research platform FINO1. The key purpose of OBLEX-F1 is to improve our knowledge of the marine boundary layer stability, air-sea interaction and offshore wake propagation effects. The data is available from the NORCOWE website under some sort of “Register first” policy.

      WIPAFF – WInd Park Far Field

      WIPAFF was a project to analysing the impact of offshore wind parks in the North Sea on the regional wind field and climate. A goal was to capture and quantify offshore wind park wakes far field effects by state-of-the-art in-situ, aircraft and satellite observations. Airborne measurements are available from Bärfuss et al. (


      ALPNAP was an EU funded project in the INTERREG IIIB Alpine Space programme. The 3-year project started in January 2005. It united 11 partners from Germany, Austria, Italy, France to form an Alpine wide network of experts in the fields of Alpine meteorology, air pollution, noise, and health effects. Most partners are universities and research centres. Measurements performed by groups in Austria (Inn Valley), Italy (Susa Valley), France (Frejus). In the Inn Valley SODAR, LIDAR measurements, and met mast measurements and transects were made. Some of the data might be still available on request (BOKU Meteorology Institute measurements for instance).

      iBox – Innsbruck Box

      iBox (short for Innsbruck Box) is a a test bed for studying boundary layer processes in complex terrain, in the Inn Valley in western Austria. The project runs from August 2011 to January 2020. Comprenhensive information about i-Box can be found here.

      An overview of the project is given in doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-15-00246.1.

      MATERHORN Project

      The Mountain Terrain Atmospheric Modeling and Observations Program (MATERHORN) is a Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) project funded by the Office of Naval Research with the goal of improving numerical weather prediction in complex terrain. The project aims to better understand the science governing weather over a large range of space and time scales in order to realize leaps in weather predictability. An overview of the project may be found in Fernando et al. (2015).

      The project included an experimental component MATERHORN-X with three major field campaigns. Two were conducted at the U.S. Army Dugway Proving Ground: MATERHORN-Fall in Fall 2012 focused on quiescent thermally driven circulations, and MATERHORN-Spring in spring 2013 , which focused on synoptically disturbed conditions. The final field campaign, MATERHORN-Fog in January 2015, was designed to better understand fog formation and evolution processes in mountainous terrain. The project has lead to new physical understanding, important model and parameterization developments and improved technology related sampling the atmospheric boundary layer in mountainous terrain.


      CROSSIN from 2018 to 2021 in the Inn valley near Innsbruck, Austria.




      • Bärfuss, Konrad; Hankers, Rudolf; Bitter, Mark; Feuerle, Thomas; Schulz, Helmut; Rausch, Thomas; Platis, Andreas; Bange, Jens; Lampert, Astrid (2019): In-situ airborne measurements of atmospheric and sea surface parameters related to offshore wind parks in the German Bight. PANGAEA,
      • E. Cantero, F. Borbón Guillén, J. Sanz Rodrigo, P. Santos, J. Mann, N. Vasiljevi?, M. Courtney, D. Martínez-Villagrasa, B. Martí, J. Cuxart (2019). Alaiz Experiment (ALEX17): Campaign and Data Report. NEWA Deliverable Report D2.21. Zenodo.
      • J. Gottschall, E. Catalano, M. Dörenkämper, B. Witha. The NEWA Ferry Lidar Experiment: Measuring Mesoscale Winds in the Southern Baltic Sea. Remote Sens. 2018, 10, 1620.″
      • J. Mann, N. Angelou, J. Arnqvist, D. Callies, E. Cantero, R. Chávez Arroyo, M. Courtney, J. Cuxart, E. Dellwik, J. Gottschall, S. Ivanell, P. Kühn, G. Lea, J. C. Matos, C. M. Veiga Rodrigues, J. M. L. M. Palma, L. Pauscher, A. Peña, J. Sanz Rodrigo, S. Söderberg and N. Vasiljevic. Complex terrain experiments in the New European Wind Atlas, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A, 2017, 375. DOI:10.1098/rsta.2016.0101
      • Santos, Pedro; Mann, Jakob; Vasiljevic, Nikola; Courtney, Michael; Sanz Rodrigo, Javier; Cantero, Elena; et al. (2019): The Alaiz Experiment (ALEX17): wind field and turbulent fluxes in a large-scale and complex topography with synoptic forcing. figshare. Collection.
      • Fernando, H.J., E.R. Pardyjak, S. Di Sabatino, F.K. Chow, S.F. De Wekker, S.W. Hoch, J. Hacker, J.C. Pace, T. Pratt, Z. Pu, W.J. Steenburgh, C.D. Whiteman, Y. Wang, D. Zajic, B. Balsley, R. Dimitrova, G.D. Emmitt, C.W. Higgins, J.C. Hunt, J.C. Knievel, D. Lawrence, Y. Liu, D.F. Nadeau, E. Kit, B.W. Blomquist, P. Conry, R.S. Coppersmith, E. Creegan, M. Felton, A. Grachev, N. Gunawardena, C. Hang, C.M. Hocut, G. Huynh, M.E. Jeglum, D. Jensen, V. Kulandaivelu, M. Lehner, L.S. Leo, D. Liberzon, J.D. Massey, K. McEnerney, S. Pal, T. Price, M. Sghiatti, Z. Silver, M. Thompson, H. Zhang, and T. Zsedrovits, 2015: The MATERHORN: Unraveling the Intricacies of Mountain Weather. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 96, 1945¿1967,
      • Fernando, H.J., J. Mann, J.M. Palma, J.K. Lundquist, R.J. Barthelmie, M. Belo-Pereira, W.O. Brown, F.K. Chow, T. Gerz, C.M. Hocut, P.M. Klein, L.S. Leo, J.C. Matos, S.P. Oncley, S.C. Pryor, L. Bariteau, T.M. Bell, N. Bodini, M.B. Carney, M.S. Courtney, E.D. Creegan, R. Dimitrova, S. Gomes, M. Hagen, J.O. Hyde, S. Kigle, R. Krishnamurthy, J.C. Lopes, L. Mazzaro, J.M. Neher, R. Menke, P. Murphy, L. Oswald, S. Otarola-Bustos, A.K. Pattantyus, C.V. Rodrigues, A. Schady, N. Sirin, S. Spuler, E. Svensson, J. Tomaszewski, D.D. Turner, L. van Veen, N. Vasiljevi¿, D. Vassallo, S. Voss, N. Wildmann, and Y. Wang, 2019: The Perdigão: Peering into Microscale Details of Mountain Winds. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 100, 799-819,
      • Shaw, W.J., L.K. Berg, J. Cline, C. Draxl, I. Djalalova, E.P. Grimit, J.K. Lundquist, M. Marquis, J. McCaa, J.B. Olson, C. Sivaraman, J. Sharp, and J.M. Wilczak, 2019: The Second Wind Forecast Improvement Project (WFIP2): General Overview. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 100, 1687-1699,
      • Wilczak, J., C. Finley, J. Freedman, J. Cline, L. Bianco, J. Olson, I. Djalalova, L. Sheridan, M. Ahlstrom, J. Manobianco, J. Zack, J.R. Carley, S. Benjamin, R. Coulter, L.K. Berg, J. Mirocha, K. Clawson, E. Natenberg, and M. Marquis, 2015: The Wind Forecast Improvement Project (WFIP): A Public-Private Partnership Addressing Wind Energy Forecast Needs. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 96, 1699-1718,