The Frodsham wind farm in Cheshire (UK) is one of the largest onshore wind developments in England (see Reference 1). The wind farm is located within range of the Primary Surveillance Radar at both Liverpool Airport and Hawarden Aerodrome. It has been reported that these issues have been overcome by implementing the Cobham RDSTrack wind farm mitigation (Reference 2).
Wind farms can adversely affect radar in a number of ways. One of the most common concerns in the UK is the issue of ‘radar clutter’. A radar operator wants to see the information about aircraft on their display system – and nothing else. Other objects, including wind turbines, can be displayed as targets on the screen, this is known as radar clutter.
Figure 1: A busy air traffic control display
The Mitigation Solution
There are various ways of mitigating the impact of wind turbines on radar. One of the more successful concepts in radar mitigation is the principle of radar in-fill. This is a solution whereby data is taken from two or more radar and combined in order to present a picture that is apparently unaffected.
The Cobham RDSTrack is an in-fill solution, combining data from multiple sources onto one air traffic control display.
It has been reported by Cobham Plc that the solution has been installed at Liverpool Airport and Hawarden Aerodrome, with “Air Navigation Order approval from the Civil Aviation Authorities Safety Group” (Reference 2).
Figure 2 below, sourced from Peel (Reference 1) shows the site plan for the Frodsham wind development.
Figure 2: Site plan for Frodsham Wind Development
- Peel Energy, 2016, Frodsham Wind Farm page (http://www.peelenergy.co.uk/frodsham/), last accessed December 2016.
- 4-traders (2016), Cobham: Keeps Airports Safe from Wind Farm Interference (http://www.4-traders.com/COBHAM-PLC-4005190/news/Cobham-Keeps-Airports-Safe-from-Wind-Farm-Interference-22691621/), last accessed December 2016.
Image Accreditation Figure 2: Sourced from Peel Energy, 2016, Frodsham Wind Farm page (http://www.peelenergy.co.uk/frodsham/)