'Stealth' Wind Turbines Won't Interfere with Radars


Photo: Flickr, CC

Tests by Vestas Show 99% Reduction in Radar Interference!

Who would have thought that military stealth airplane technology could one day help to provide clean energy for the world? Swords into ploughshares, no kidding! The Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas has tested a prototype of a radar-friendly turbine in the UK and found that the "stealth rotor achieved a targeted reduction in radar reflection of about 99 percent compared with standard turbines." That's not a small reduction... Read on for more details.

offshore wind turbine photo

Photo: Flickr, CC

Stealth technology was initially developed by the U.S. military starting in the late 1950s to prevent radar tracking of spy planes and is currently used in the Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit "Stealth Bomber".

Stealth turbines are made with radar-absorbing materials, which can almost entirely eliminate the reflection of radar waves off the turbine, Vestas said.

"This is a critical step toward the commercialisation of stealth turbines and holds potential to open a significant number of wind power locations for Vestas customers," Madsen said.

Many gigawatts of wind projects are currently being blocked around the world because of concerns about radar interferences. Such a technology could help make these issues a thing of the past, and open up locations to wind farms that would not even have been considered before.

It's not yet on the market, but Vestas expects that it will become a commercial product, and I wouldn't be surprised if other turbine makers were working on similar technologies (because after all, they're all faced with the same problems, and the more locations wind turbines can be installed at, the more of them they'll sell).


Photo: C.G.P. Grey, Flickr, CC

See also: Storing Wind Power Energy in Compressed Air Tanks Could Change the World

Via Reuters

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