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Wind Energy Impact on Air Surveillance Radar

BOOZ ALLEN’S PHYSICS-BASED MODELING, SIMULATION, AND ANALYSIS EFFORTS TO QUANTIFY THE IMPACT OF WIND FARMS ON DOMESTIC RADAR

As municipalities across America seek alternatives to traditional energy production, wind farms are becoming an increasingly common sight. A wind farm can consist of more than a thousand individual towers, each with massive rotating blades used to capture wind energy to feed a growing appetite for electricity.

These expansive wind farms can negatively impact domestic air traffic control radar and military test and training range radar, impeding their ability to track targets near turbines. Prior to construction, the impact of turbines on a region’s civil and military radar must be considered.

Military test and training ranges as well as civil air operations are concerned about how renewable energy technologies may impact aircrew training, airborne radio frequency (RF) system components, and flight safety. With deep modeling and radar analysis capabilities, Booz Allen’s experts are exploring wind turbine technical impacts, specifically those associated with RF sensor systems.

Understanding the Impact of Wind Turbines on Air Surveillance Radar

Encroachment by a number of renewable energy technologies on and around military test and training ranges introduces man-made changes to an established environment, potentially diminishing the ability of the warfighter to conduct required training, testing, and evaluation of aircraft subsystems, primarily with respect to RF sensor suites. These same renewable energy technologies can also impact flight safety for civil air operations throughout the national air space.

 

Creating a High-Fidelity Radar Simulation Environment

Booz Allen has developed a high-fidelity, signal-based model—called WindTRx—that allows wind farm developers, civil, and military stakeholders to look at the same data, understand the impacts of specific turbine placement, and make adjustments early in the planning phase with assurances of the final impact on local radar.

 

Leveraging World-Class Radar Modeling Expertise

Booz Allen’s combination of validated radar and wind turbine models, digital terrain data, and inherent WindTRx radar analysis capabilities provides a means of performing both a high-fidelity assessment of prospective wind farm developments and a varied method of assessing the specific impact of existing wind farms on air traffic, radar surveillance, and military testing and training activities.

 

 

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