Case Study - Hybrid Wind and Solar

House O’Hill

Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire

Green Cat Renewables (GCR) provided all elements of consultancy and development support services for this unique project ranging from initial conception, planning, build and into operation and maintenance management.

Three wind turbines were developed on the site in 2010 by GCR and are some of the best performing wind turbines in mainland UK with an average load factor of over 40%. Solar PV technology was later added following a detailed generation study with the aim of balancing the export profile across the year, thereby utilising the existing grid connection capacity. The construction of combined wind and solar sites is advantageous to the developer providing a greater consistency of generation across the year, levelling out the natural peaks and troughs of the generation profile when these technologies are isolated. The combination of the generation profiles of wind and solar are a particularly good fit as they tend not to coincide. This means that a grid connection for the full combined capacity is not necessary in most cases.

The export limit of the House O’Hill development is 3.2MW, however, the addition of solar has increased the total installed site capacity to 4MW. This has been calculated as the optimum scale of solar installation with the resource and curtailment analysis identifying a curtailment requirement of only 3%. Green Cat undertakes similar studies to match on-site demand with generation.

GCR undertook all environmental and technical assessments required to ensure a viable project was established. The team continued on to successfully gain planning consent; managed construction of the scheme; and continue providing O&M services for the entire project.

The co-location of wind and solar technologies has proven to be a success at this development, by optimising the grid connection infrastructure. A feasibility study has also been undertaken for the addition of battery storage to provide further optimisation to balance the wind and solar resource variability, maximising revenue by enabling continuous maximum export; the overall cost benefit analysis did not support implementation at the current time.

Key Data
  • Local Farm seeking to diversify and optimise full potential of the land
  • 4MW combined capacity
  • Pioneering hybrid renewable generation
  • Solar and Wind
  • 3 x Enercon E48 turbines
  • Over 6,000 260Wp solar panels
  • Provides more efficient and optimum use of grid connection
  • Allows agriculture to continue
  • Gained full support from Local Planning Authority officers