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Montel and SMHI: 20 Years of Cooperation

September 6th, 2021

Since 2001, Montel and the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) have worked in partnership to provide tailored weather forecasting services for interested parties within the European power industry. Read on to see how our two businesses have spent the past 20 years innovating together.

The weather has always been a key driver in power markets. Temperatures affect demand, rainfall impacts hydropower production and freak events can have major impacts on market movements.

But the relevance of reliable weather data, briefings with an experienced meteorologist and longer-term climate trends has become ever more essential as Europe and the world moves away from fossil fuels and transitions to renewable methods of generating power.

A fruitful cooperation

For 15 years, the reliable and easily accessible weather data provided by SMHI has helped power Montel’s fundamental data. Then, in 2016, Montel set up a new division to develop smart solutions for the power markets using machine learning, a branch within the broader field of artificial intelligence (AI). From here, Montel AI was born, and the cooperation with SMHI enabled cutting-edge product development with global potential.

The cooperation with SMHI has enabled the Montel Group to churn through climate data and continuous weather forecasts from SMHI, before adding historical plant-specific data to create continuous production forecasts for hydropower, wind and solar plants up to 7 days ahead.

Once a renewable power plant is up and running, these production forecasts from Montel AI and SMHI have already proven to lower the error margin for the operators, creating more profitable plants and helping to drive further investments into renewables.

Investing for the future

In the initial stages of deciding where to site a new power plant, SMHI can provide 40 years of weather history that allows developers to make an informed investment decision once this historical weather data is translated into simulated power production.

Then, once that windmill starts spinning or water runs through the turbine in a run-of-river power plant, Montel AI’s production forecasts provide automated updates that are reported straight into the day-ahead electricity market. From start-up through to operation, forecasting products from the Montel Group and SMHI can help optimise power plant operations with models for:

·       Wind power production (MWh)

·       Run-of-river production (MWh)

·       Inflow to reservoirs (m3/s)

·       Spot price predictions (EUR/MWh)

Further forecasting

In 2017, Montel launched a new service – Energy Quantified by Montel (EQ). Providing fundamental forecasts for power professionals, EQ uses SMHI data to offer spot market forecasts up to 45 days ahead. Hydrology data feeding into market predictions also come courtesy of SMHI.

With weather playing such an important part across so many aspects of power markets, the cooperation between the two businesses has been vital to creating the wide range of services accessible via the Montel Group.