Agency taps new technology to clean up radar’s turbine clutter

Source: Clare Clancy, Canadian Press/Edmonton Journal • Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Canada’s top environmental agency is set to employ new technology that would counteract the radar disruptions caused by wind farms.

The movement of wind turbines can sometimes mimic weather in Doppler radar systems, confusing meteorologists trying to make weather forecasts and even blocking radar signals in extreme cases.

Jim Young of Environment Canada’s national radar program said the country will use new software in its radar systems starting this fall to try to deal with the “contamination.”

“I certainly have very high hopes,” he said, adding that Environment Canada has been worried about clutter from wind farms for years.

Usually radar data filters out objects like buildings, trees or towers, but the turbines’ constant movement can cause issues, blocking out sections on radar maps.

Environment Canada’s website says the problem can be “significantly misleading for forecasters under storm conditions”