VOCA

An aviation researcher, writer, aviation participant, pilot & agricultural researcher. Author of over 35 scientific publications world wide.

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Wind Turbines

The subject of wind turbines has been quite a hot bed over the past few years, with claim and counter claim as to effectiveness and effects. The increasingly hot political subjects of approvals as items of  State Significance in NSW. This places the approval process away from the local effects and politics.

However, even higher levels of interference are possible in these higher levels of fora.

Whether people regard this as good or bad seems to resolve around specific point of view in relation to wind turbines.

The effect on aviation can be associated with the size of the wind turbine, being up to 400FT AGL [Above Ground Level] to the top of the turbine blade. Simply, in areas away from populated areas, aircraft are able to fly to 500FT AGL  when flying in VFR [Visual Flight Rules] and 1000FT AGL when IFR [Instrument Flight Rules].

Not a lot of clearance at all and the tips are not lit, so there can be almost 200FT above the small single red light when the wind turbine is lit.

The following shows the amount of turbulence downstream of the turbines,  which is graphically illustrated by the patterns in the fog.

When there is no fog, the turbulence is completely invisible. The distance turbulence flows has not been documented, but as the picture shows, it is a substantial distance.

There has been a document released, which I could not find on CASA’s web site and attempts have been made to have it released on FOI, and here it is:

Aerosafe report

A bit of a read gives serious misgivings as to whether CASA is understanding the basis of the actual risk:

Based on the key findings, this report provides 10 key recommendations that are designed to bring Australian legislation, regulations and practices in line with the best practices used internationally and ensure that the appropriate ICAO standards and recommended practices are satisfied. The principle recommendation of this report is the development of legislation that allows for the making of regulations surrounding the issue of man made obstacles that are located away from the vicinity of an aerodrome. Given that this legislative power is ratified, it is recommended that all regulations concerning objects that might affect the safety of navigable airspace should be contained within one Civil Aviation Safety Regulation (CASR) i.e. CASR Part 77 Objects that Affect the Navigable Airspace. And that all regulations pertaining to obstacles contained within CASR 139 should be rolled into CASR Part 77.

AND:

ICAO REQUIREMENTS
The current Australian legislative framework is inconsistent with ICAO Standards in relation to man made obstacles as set out in ICAO Annex 14 Volume I Chapter 4 and Chapter 6.

AND:

CURRENT AUSTRALIAN PROCESS

The RAAF AIS is the organisation in Australia charged with the responsibility to collect man made obstacle data, however the data is collected for information and charting purposes only.

No Aeronautical Studies are done to determine whether the man made obstacle is a hazard to aviation. There is a high level of uncertainty around the current
information that is held on man made obstacles.

It can be reasonably assumed that this is due to the fact that legislation in Australia does not require the mandatory reporting of tall structures that could potentially be obstacles to navigable airspace.

DOES THIS mean CASA is in breach of CAAct 9A??

Previous work is detailed by a group in Crookwell: