Radar system to save birds from clashing against wind mills

by Antonio Pasolini on May 5, 2009

Alternative Energy News has a great article about a company called Peñascal, a 202 MW wind farm in Texas, who wants “to become a model for responsible development by installing new radar technology to protect migratory birds and wildlife”. You see, wind farms kill about 7,000 birds a year and I’m inclined to agree with the view expressed in the article, which is that this number is underestimated. Peñascal will be using radar technology developed by Florida based DeTect, Inc.

From DeTect’s website, I garnered the following bit of information:

The MERLIN™ detect & deter bird control radar system is an advanced radar system designed to monitor user-defined bird and wildlife control zones, automatically activating bird deterrent devices to deter and harass birds entering restricted areas. The system is based on DeTect’s proven MERLIN Avian Radar System technology that is used by the USAF, NASA and airports worldwide to detect and monitor hazardous bird activity on and around airfields for bird-aircraft strike hazard management. MERLIN detect & deter Applications include control of birds at industrial waste impoundments, oil & gas drilling frac ponds, landfills, stormwater retention basins, crop fields and any site requires automated bird control.

I congratulate Penãscal for the concern with the birds. At the end of the day, our quest for clean energy is a quest to protect all life so every effort should be made to mitigate the impact that new technologies have on other living creatures.

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