Is wind turbine radar interference a thing of the past now?

Is wind turbine radar interference a thing of the past now?

2-Dec-2013 Source: Terma

Some offshore operations have in recent years been hampered by radar interference from massive offshore wind farms.  However, it looks like this could soon be history with the following press release from Terma:-

Terma’s SCANTER 4002 radar demonstrated exceptional results during a test performed in late 2012 in Abilene, Texas, U.S. with more than 500 wind turbines within line of sight. The entire test area was covered by one single SCANTER 4002.

The radar detected and tracked a variety of aircraft with an unsurpassed track probability of 98% over the wind farm and 99% outside wind farm areas while maintaining probability of false alarm rates as low as 0,0000001. Data accuracy was well within specifications of existing air traffic control radars.

Compared to existing air traffic control radars, the SCANTER 4002 demonstrated a remarkable resilience to wind farm clutter and was able to resolve targets from wind turbines without increasing the number of false alarms.

The test program, known as the Interagency Field Test & Evaluation (IFT&E), was established by the U.S. Administration in response to the increasing challenges with wind turbine impact on air surveillance radars.

IFT&E intended to investigate near-term and off-the-shelf solutions to mitigate the impact of wind turbine radar interference. The program is sponsored by Dept. of Defense, Dept. of Energy, Dept. of Homeland Security, and Federal Aviation Administration.

Wind turbines grouped in large wind farms may have a significant effect on air traffic control (ATC) radars and other aviation radars as they are designed to show moving objects like aircraft and filter out anything stationary. The spinning blades of wind turbines may appear on radar screens as false aircraft. The interference (or “clutter”) generated by wind turbines may desensitize a radar in the area of a wind farm, causing legitimate targets to disappear.

This may affect the deployment of wind farms and several planned wind farms have been delayed significantly or halted due to objections raised by military or civil aviation authorities.

The SCANTER 4002 radar is capable of mitigating multiple wind farms. Consequently, in most cases, only one radar is needed to cover a large area. The range of SCANTER 4002 enables it to be co-located with existing air traffic control radars to eliminate slant range integration errors and reduce infrastructure requirements.

About Terma
Terma develops products and systems for defense, non-defense, and security applications, including command and control systems, radar systems, self-protection systems for ships and aircraft, space technology, and advanced aerostructures for the international aircraft industry.

The group, headquartered at Aarhus, Denmark, has a total staff of 1,125, realized 2012/13 revenues of USD 200 million, and maintains international subsidiaries and operations in The Netherlands, Germany, Singapore, India, and in the U.S.

Further information about Terma is available at

Image: Wikipedia Commons

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