Beaconing meteorological towers

Balisage aérien pour tours de météo

The investments necessary for building wind farms are considerable and therefore, promoters need to ensure the viability of their projects, since they are carried out in an environment where something as variable and difficult as the local weather is dependent.

In order to know with maximum reliability the wind resource of a site it is essential to obtain measurements of wind speed, direction, temperature and other variables, in situ, over a minimum period of 12 months.

For this, measurement towers incorporates several meteorological devices to register the wind energy available in that specific area and to establish the viability or not of a future wind farm.

These towers/antennas are usually metallic, triangular, braced (with braces) or self-supporting (without braces), being able to exceed 100m in height.

These structures must be duly marked, clearly visible both day and night, to avoid aviation risks, according to ICAO regulations, International Civil Aviation Organization.

The ICAO regulations are “suggestions” the Agency establishes and the different countries, using their internal regulatory capacity, are able to adopt as their own standard. But such suggestions may vary depending on the characteristics and needs of each place or project. Therefore, what the country’s Air Authority is ordering in each case should be applied.

In the absence of these specific standards, the ICAO rules are applicable, as follows:

In towers up to 45m high:

  • A light will be installed at the highest possible point.
  • It must be of “Low Intensity”: red, fixed and nighttime lights. It can be Type A (10Cd), or Type B (32Cd).
  • It must be visible from 360º of Azimut.

Towers of height between 46m up to 105m:

  • A light will be installed at the highest possible point.
  • It must be a “Medium Intensity”, red light, night operation, 2,000Cd. Type B are blinking (between 20 and 60 flashes per minute), and Type C are fixed light.
  • In equidistant sections that do not exceed 52m distance, intermediate light levels must be installed. These may all be Medium Intensity or alternatively combine Medium and Low intensity.
  • All light levels must be visible from 360º of azimuth. (Therefore, intermediate levels of lights, because the tower is triangular in section, must have 3 lights per level, each of them placed in one of the edges of the tower).

Towers of height greater than 105m, up to 150m:

  • A light will be installed at the highest possible point.
  • It must be of “Medium Intensity”, Type A: white flashing light, daytime running 20,000Cd and during night 2,000 Cds. blinking between 20 to 60 flashes per minute.
  • At equidistant separations that do not exceed 52m of separation, intermediate lights must be installed along the tower, following the same criteria as in the previous case.
  • All beacons must be visible from 360º of Azimuth. (Therefore, intermediate levels of lights, because the tower is triangular in section, must have 3 lights per level, each of them placed in one of the edges of the tower).

Met Towers over 150m high.

High Intensity beacons will be installed. It is recommended in this case to consult with the local Air Authority

Since wind measurement towers are installed in places generally without access to the electricity grid, it is highly recommended to use solar-powered light beacons.

Photovoltaic beacons do not consume energy from battery racks or generators dedicated to supply power to the tower’s sensors, as well as to dataloggers and communications systems, allowing greater autonomy of these while helping to dimension lower battery and electronic power systems. Also the installation of the beacons will made without wiring or maintenance. The beacon is fixed to the tower, “ON” and ready.

There are very few “compact beacons” manufacturers which are incorporating solar panels, led technology and all the necessary electronics inside. And having obtained the ICAO certifications of compliance.

IVSOLAR is one of them, being specialists for more than 20 years. Our beacons are shining in more than 42 countries around the world, in the most diverse weathers, having achieved high recognition for their reliability and technological quality.



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