Version 3 of the Global Wind Atlas is now online

ides bauwens
Oct 23 · 3 min read

The Global Wind Atlas helps wind energy specialists from around the globe to assess the wind energy potential on any given location on earth. A new version with improved wind resource data allows users to calculate annual energy production yields, capacity factor or full load hours online.

Regular visitors will notice right away, the wind resource data has been updated and extended up to 200 km from the shoreline. Two new heights have been added, making wind resource data available at 10, 50, 100, 150 and 200 m above ground/sea level. But these are not the only changes.

Global Wind Atlas v3 has updated wind resource data extended up to 200 km from the shoreline

Through the shortcut below the layer filters, users can go in 1 click to the Download layers section. And its worth it. From the Download section, one can download all available layers + Air Density layers for all heights for the whole globe. API access is foreseen for those who like to integrate the data into their own scripts and calculations.

The plots in the sidebar have been updated as well. Users can now also explore the temporal dimension of wind. Plots for normalized mean wind speed by year, month, and hour (for every nearest 3 km mesoscale cell) can be consulted for display and download. The UTC vs LTZ toggle comes in as a very handy feature here.

Temporal plots in Global Wind Atlas v3
Temporal plots in Global Wind Atlas v3
Global Wind Atlas v3 includes temporal plots on Wind Speed Variability for annual, monthly and hourly normalized mean wind speed values

One of the most important new features is without a doubt the Energy Yield Calculator. This brand new feature allows users to specify a generic or custom wind turbine and lets them create downloadable GIS-data for annual energy production, capacity factor, or full load hours.

In two steps, the tool lets users (i) insert or upload Wind turbine information and (ii) set the configuration before calculating outputs. Turbine type information can be uploaded in .json, .csv or .wtg (WAsP) format. The tool is smart enough to remember the last settings when calculations would be interrupted. Turbine type settings can also be saved in the browser or on hard disk for later use. Multiple calculations can run in parallel.

Screenshot of the Energy Yield Calculator

And last but not least, there is validation. Data from measurement campaigns in Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Vietnam, and Zambia are used to validate modelled country wind resources.

Validated countries can be recognized by the green check mark next to the country’s name. A validation report with technical details can be downloaded from the country’s page. The list of validated countries will be further updated as the validation data becomes available.

With version 3 of the Global Wind Atlas, the free access to tools and data for wind resource assessment has reached a new level. The interface and its data will be more than ever useful to both casual and professional users alike.

Curious about the technology used for creating the Global Wind Atlas Interface? Find out more here.


The Global Wind Atlas is a free, web-based application developed to help policymakers and investors identify potential high-wind areas for wind power generation virtually anywhere in the world, and perform preliminary calculations. The tool facilitates online queries and provides freely downloadable datasets based on the latest input data and modeling methodologies. This version of the Global Wind Atlas (GWA 3.0) is the product of a partnership between the Department of Wind Energy at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU Wind Energy), Vortex and the World Bank Group (consisting of The World Bank and the International Finance Corporation, or IFC). Work on GWA 3.0 was primarily funded by the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP). The Global Wind Atlas web interface has been developed by Nazka Mapps.

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