Data Visualizations Enable Exploration of Key U.S. Wind Power Trends

September 10, 2018

In conjunction with the release of the annual Wind Technologies Market Report, prepared for the U.S. Department of Energy, Berkeley Lab has produced a series of interactive data visualizations that allow users to explore some of the data from the report.

To prepare the report, Berkeley Lab researchers compile data on wind power market growth, as well as project-level technology trends, performance, and prices.

The interactive visualizations provide access to the data, allowing the user to easily focus on specific geographic areas, time periods, or attributes of wind power deployment in the United States. Users can apply filters to show subsets of data, zoom in on regions, and see project level information by mousing-over a point. No programming or spreadsheet skills are required.

The visualizations cover:

Growth

A set of maps that show the growth of wind power by state over time, showing the annual and cumulative capacity installed, plus the percent of in-state generation.

Performance

Maps that show the 2017 capacity factors for 825 projects built between 1998 and 2016, by project and with state averages. Project locations are overlaid on a map of wind speed.

Contract prices

A bubble chart that shows power purchase agreement (PPA) prices since 1996 for over 430 projects, color-coded by region.

Technology trends

Maps that show how wind turbine generator size, hub height, rotor diameter, and specific power vary by location and over time.

Specific power

A dashboard that explains the importance of specific power, which is the relationship between the maximum output of the wind turbine generator and the size of the rotor. 

The visualizations are posted at windreport.lbl.gov, along with the full report, a presentation slide deck that summarizes the report, and an Excel workbook that contains data from the report. The visualizations are public domain, and can be embedded in articles and blog posts.

Additional visualizations are available for the 2016 Utility-Scale Solar report, which tracks data on solar projects greater than five megawatt in size. They will be updated when the next edition of the report is released.

We appreciate the support of the U.S. DOE’s Wind Energy Technologies Office in making this work possible.

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