Daily Archives: August 3, 2018

Wind farms adversely affect radar; Negatively impact military operations

“Wind farms located within 30 nm or within sight of the radar, can significantly impact velocity and spectrum width data, which can cause bad data sampling of rotating storms and false storm motions, along with impacting algorithms used by the radar to process this data. Schemes designed to filter out the ground clutter do not work properly.” click here

“The document was sent out by Jessica A. Schultz with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and lists the possible impact of wind turbines for the four NWS weather stations that use the weather radar. According to documents published online by NOAA, Ms. Schultz works at the NOAA NWS Radar Operations Center in Oklahoma. Although the document itself is unsigned, the document’s properties list the author as being a JSchultz.” click here

“Wind Turbines contaminate the low level angles or radio waves the Doppler Radar emits and contaminates the data collected by the radar. There is no other system in this area that will provide low level weather radar coverage to Fort Drum and the NWS/FAA.” click here

“The Navy has identified possible negative impacts from the wind farms, which are considered “renewable energy development,” and  will seek to implement “several mitigation measures to address degraded performance of primary radar for air traffic control.” These could include radar fusion, implementation of special air traffic rules in South Texas, radar system performance upgrades and potentially the acquisition of replacement or in-fill radars, according to the report.” click here

“As the number and size of wind turbines in the United States is expected to grow significantly over the next half century, so could their effect on range flight safety, mission execution, and supporting weather forecasting. The next generation of taller wind turbines, with turbine tip heights over 600 feet, has begun to arrive near installations and underneath low-level training routes that Air Force aircraft transit into the ranges. Air Force operations and training leaders are at preliminary stages in assessing the impact of this new challenge. click here

“…many commanders expressed concern related to how additional wind energy projects in the vicinity of the military installation might increase cumulative impacts to military readiness and operations.” click here

“With the nation’s largest existing wind generation capacity, Texas leads the nation inwind energy development.  Soon to have almost 100 “wind farms”, each having an average just over 70 turbines, Texas will soon meet its 2025 target of 10,000 Megawatts (MW) of capacity.  As  the wind energy industry continues to expand, issues of compatibility with other national  priorities are likely to arise.  Among those compatibility issues is military training, specifically the  potential for radar interference to military flight training and operations.  Given the recent growth  of the wind energy industry in Texas, along with the prevalence of military training facilities in the  state, this issue is a growing concern to decision‐makers.” click here

“The results demonstrated that the large radar cross section of a wind turbine combined with the Doppler frequency shift produced by its rotating blades can impact the ability of a radar to discriminate the wind turbine from an aircraft. Those tests also demonstrated that the wind farms have the potential to degrade target tracking capabilities as a result of shadowing and clutter effects.” click here

“The data shows that the existing POR primary surveillance radars are severely impacted by wind turbines while the beacon transponder-based secondary surveillance radars was not affected by wind turbines. In addition, eight mitigation systems representing three mitigation categories, participated in these three flight tests. While all systems tested were impacted by wind turbines, the replacement radar and most of the infill radars performed better than the existing POR radars in the Within/Above wind turbine region. The infill radars demonstrated either sufficient, or near sufficient, detection performance but elevated false alarm rates in general or poor detection performance for aircraft at higher elevation angles.” click here

“The government’s own studies (e.g. from MIT and Army Corps of Engineers) concluded that any industrial wind project closer than 28 miles to a ROTHR receiver will seriously degrade its performance. The Desert Wind project is 14± miles away from the ROTHR receiver. (Note that the Desert Wind turbines are also larger than those used in the government’s study.)” click here