Monday, May 2, 2011

Wolfe Island Wind Farm Infrasound

Wolfe Island, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Just got a note from a lady living near there.  On certain days, it feels like living in a pump house.  The 2 Hz signal is universal with wind farms, and is caused by the fundamental frequency of the the tower support.  With the requirement to sync into the grid, these things can all sync up and start waving like dancing flowers.  The resulting infrasound can travel for long distances, but I'm sure it's worse over the water.

All I'm suggesting is that people keep detailed journals, and they get together.  I'd get involved, but I've got big jets flying overhead!  It's easy for seismometers and infrasound detectors to measure this phenomenon, but then what do you do?  Much like jet noise, the question is one of human tolerance, and effects on people.  This is one reason why I am against these things.  I am sure that one day it will be found that the effects are bad.

 Feb. 27, 2017 addition.  I have found that this picture is at the top of Google image search, attributed to me.  At the time I found it at the top of the search, and I have never bothered attributing top images.  This is so embarrassing!  not.  :)


Hypocentre said...

Actually, the fundamental frequency is the blade passing frequency (as each blade passes infront of the tower and the wind load is on the blade, not the tower) i.e. one third the blade rotation frequency.

Infrasound is higher on low wind velocity days when the air flow is more laminar. It is actually less on windy days.

Harold Asmis said...

Darn. I so much liked my image of dancing flowers! Well, that's why I line up smart people to read my blog. :)

Harold Asmis said...

Actually, I can't believe that an entire wind farm syncs by spinning. The blade crossing the tower would be a 'thunk' at 2 Hz, much like when I was on a big ship doing geophysics. The engines had this nice 'thunk-thunk-thunk' that put me to sleep.

If it is barometric, sinusoidal 2 Hz that attacks the chest cavity and inner ear, then I still think it is dancing flowers.

If it is blade sync, then the problem is easily solved by attaching the props in a random manner to the turbine.

Looking at pictures, I've never seen blade sync. Has anybody?

Joy Youtenna said...

With all due respect, I can understand your position, but by comparison to fuel emissions and nuclear radiation, I'll take the infrasound. Not to minimize the impact of infrasound on the environment, but from an engineering standpoint, it is a problem much easier to solve than, where do we store the nuclear waste or how do we clean up the atmosphere? All energy sources come with a price. Solar and wind seem to be the least costly on many levels. Of course the oil companies and nuclear power industry would like us to believe wind power is evil. An eyesore. Dangerous to birds. I just don't see the logic. How many birds are killed in a single oil spill? By comparison, wind energy impact is minute.