Thet Lin Thu

CEO @ Traverse

4 min read · September 10th 2018

Project feasibility is hard. It shouldn't be.

After two years of hard work, we are thrilled to announce the launch of Traverse. Traverse is a geospatial simulation software for renewable energy project developers. You can draw the schematics of your project and immediately receive an estimate of:

  • detailed bill of quantities leading to CAPEX
  • power generation and revenue estimates
  • soil cut and fill take-off volumes
  • infringement on nationally protected areas and setbacks
  • project and equity IRR based on industry standard project finance models

Traverse Screenshot
Excavation Take-Off Volumes

You can also perform a variety of “Geo Algorithms” (that contributes to CAPEX, revenue and IRR) such as:

  • Solar PV irradiation, terrain shadow analysis etc.
  • Wind wind speeds, terrain smoothness / obstructions, hill speed-ups etc.
  • Hydropower hydrology, design flow optimization, catchment, inundation etc.

At the risk of being a little boring, we have named these products HydroDesk, SolarDesk and WindDesk. HydroDesk is available today while WindDesk and SolarDesk will be available in the first half of 2019.

Changing the Game

Traverse Screenshot
Sensitivity Analysis of Equity IRR

We built Traverse around three core principles to enable project developers to manage their development risk in high resolution:

  • Scale One of the largest challenges we faced was in providing seamless dataset coverage on a global scale. We are proud to say that you can use almost all of Traverse’s features for approximately 70% of global landmass. Most developers would only need up to the size of a province or two and if you are a government performing an inventory study, a single country.

  • Speed There is nothing to download or install: you simply login and start creating projects on a map straight from your internet browser. Afterwards, you send jobs to our cloud supercomputers and they deliver results within minutes. We call this “Simulating a Project”. Previously, a desk based study takes anywhere between 2 to 4 weeks to complete.

  • Line of Sight To evaluate a project, engineering teams have to use anywhere between 3 to 6 separate software such as Google Earth, ArcGIS, AutoCAD, Meteonorm etc. They then use hundreds (if not thousands) of duplicate Excel files, as a holy glue between the inputs and outputs of various processes. We have all seen these in the wild before: prjEgyptianWindGod-alt14B-3-13jun-v2.9-final-markedup-reallyfinal.xlsx.

    Traverse provides a holistic answer for the equation IRR = Revenue - CAPEX that a single engineer or analyst can perform in an uninterrupted workflow. It is an integrated end-to-end software that provides a direct line of sight between ground conditions, E&S risk and financial performance.

Traverse Screenshot
Organize and Create Your Projects on Your Map

Being able to generate project performance estimates at this speed, scale and observability allows project managers to trade off unnecessary precision for accuracy at the early stages of a project’s lifecycle. They can easily test and shortlist a large number of different project configurations across diverse locations in their region(s) of choice, at a fraction of time and cost they would have normally incurred.

Example: All the Waterfalls in the World

We don’t need a total station to know that a waterfall has a large amount of hydraulic head within a very short distance. But where are all the waterfall like places in the world? One of the many features of HydroDesk is River Slopes, which you can toggle at the click of a button.

Traverse Screenshot
Descending Order of Slope: Red, Purple, Green, Blue, Yellow

Why Traverse?

Our mission is to provide developers, financiers, governments, engineers and analysts with super powers to predict project performance on a continental scale.

Our planet is really large. The large majority of project assessment work-flows (such as pre-FS/FS processes) performed today are on localized areas by small in-house teams aided by engineering consultancies. They can only see as much of the world as their finite work hours allow.

In addition to engineering issues, a large part of development risk is in permitting and land acquisition. However, to buy the right piece of land and apply for the right permits, it helps to know in advance whether a certain locale will bear technical fruit. This is a chicken and egg problem with a deadline.

firstSlideHeroSatelliteWithBoxOverlaySmall

To tackle this problem, we built Traverse with a multi-disciplinary approach marrying modern advances in computer science (such as machine learning), classical civil-mechanical engineering, the earth sciences and half a century of satellite reconnaissance data.

We hope that Traverse can give another leg-up to the acceleration of global renewable energy adoption in addition to the huge transformations happening in EPC prices, cell efficiencies, policy reform and consumer demand.


If you would like to try out Traverse or have any queries, please feel free to contact me at thet@traverse.ai.

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