An objective study will be conducted in Germany to understand the actual noise and vibrations made by onshore wind turbines.
The TremAc project(study), being funded by Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, will take place over a period of roughly 3 years (into 2019) and ‘is aimed at improving the planning, development, and acceptance of wind power plants and at developing objective criteria for their emissions.’
The study has the following goals:
- Identification of the main parameters and thresholds for an objective assessment of turbine sound and vibration emissions taking into account turbine design, topography and distance from the place of emission.
- Development of prognosis and simulation models for the emission and propagation of airborne sound (especially infrasound) and vibration (structure-borne sound) interacting with structures, initially for flat terrain and subsequently for complex mountainous terrain and different subsoil strengths.
- Development of strategies for optimizing wind turbines through adaptable constructive designs with a view to reducing sound and vibration emissions, this applies, for example, to the positioning of the drive train or of the tower and to shielding procedures.
- Increasing acceptance and creation of a sound data base in terms of environmental health and environmental psychology in order to promote an objective discussion of potential health risks of wind turbines
Coordinator of the TremAc cooperation project and Head of the Institute of Soil Mechanics and Rock Mechanics of the Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT), said: “We want to compute the complete chain of effects from the plant to the population.”
Both noise and vibrations have been studied separately up until this point, “This is far too limited in scope to understand why neighbors complain of inconveniences caused by wind power plants even though the required limit values are observed and people should not hear anything physiologically,” Triantafyllidis says.
The TremAc Project will be focusing on noise and vibrations together including the ‘interactions between airborne sound and structure-borne sound’ while criteria will be determined by both engineers and social scientists.