Stealth Technology for Wind Turbines
Many proposed wind farms are objected to by government and civil bodies representing the interests of radar users on the basis that detection of targets in the vicinity of wind farms may be impaired. This applies to military air defence radars, civil and military air traffic control radars, meteorological radars and marine vessel and shore based coastal radars, among others.
Stealth Technology For Wind Turbines Web is a £1.2M project part-funded by the Department of Trade and Industry to bring military aerospace stealth technology to wind turbines. The project commenced in November 2005 and is forecast to complete in October 2007. The consortium consists of BAE SYSTEMS Advanced Technology Centre as the lead partner along with the University of Sheffield, University of Manchester, and the wind turbine manufacturer Vestas.
The work includes mathematical modelling to estimate the radar cross section of a current wind turbine design at a range of microwave frequencies. This information is to be used with radar models and radio propagation prediction tools to estimate the required level of radar cross section (RCS) reduction likely to bring about significant improvements in detection of targets in the proximity of wind turbines for particular radars.
A number of candidate material and shaping solutions have been considered as a means of achieving the desired RCS reduction over the frequencies of interest. The solutions were first modelled as computer representations and then representative material sections manufactured and their properties measured to verify the predicted performance.