Wind turbines may impact weather

By on February 21, 2013
Wind turbine (Credit: Diane Turner, via Flickr)

Wind turbines are good at harnessing wind to produce energy, but Swiss researchers say the structures produce drafts that may also impact weather patterns on a local level, according to The Guardian.

The researchers used a scale model of a wind farm and a wind tunnel to measure changes in temperature and humidity around turbines. They found that drafts produced by the circulating blades combine, affecting the way that heat and moisture are lost from surrounding soil.

Sometimes that effect is positive, such as in summer months when the turbines cool air and help crops to thrive. In other seasons, land may be dried by the fans, causing crops to wilt. Most of the effects are localized and occur on large wind farms.

Image: Wind turbine (Credit: Diane Turner, via Flickr)

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