Guide to Using the WIND Toolkit Validation Code

Caroline Draxl, Wil Lieberman-Cribbin, Andrew Clifton

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


In response to the U.S. Department of Energy's goal of using 20 percent wind energy by 2030, the Wind Integration National Dataset (WIND) Toolkit was created to provide information on wind speed, wind direction, temperature, surface air pressure, and air density on more than 126,000 locations across the United States from 2007 to 2013. The numerical weather prediction model output, gridded at 2-km and at a 5-minute resolution, was further converted to detail the wind power production time series of existing and potential wind facility sites. For users of the dataset it is important that the information presented in the WIND Toolkit is accurate and that errors are known, as then corrective steps can be taken. Therefore, we provide validation code written in R that will be made public to provide users with tools to validate data of their own locations. Validation is based on statistical analyses of wind speed, using error metrics such as bias, root-mean-square error, centered root-mean-square error, mean absolute error, and percent error. Plots of diurnal cycles, annual cycles, wind roses, histograms of wind speed, and quantile-quantile plots are created to visualize how well observational data compares to model data. Ideally, validation will confirm beneficial locations to utilize wind energy and encourage regional wind integration studies using the WIND Toolkit.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages31
StatePublished - 2014

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5000-62595


  • NREL
  • numerical weather prediction model
  • Wind Integration National Dataset (WIND) Toolkit
  • wind power production
  • wind toolkit


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