Reduction of wind-turbine-generated seismic noise with structural measures

Rafael Abreu, Daniel Peter, Christine Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Reducing wind turbine noise recorded at seismological stations promises to lower the conflict between renewable energy producers and seismologists. Seismic noise generated by the movement of wind turbines has been shown to travel large distances, affecting seismological stations used for seismic monitoring and/or the detection of seismic events. In this study, we use advanced 3D numerical techniques to study the possibility of using structural changes in the ground on the wave path between the wind turbine and the seismic station in order to reduce or mitigate the noise generated by the wind turbine. Testing a range of structural changes around the foundation of the wind turbine, such as open and filled cavities, we show that we are able to considerably reduce the seismic noise recorded by placing empty circular trenches approx. 10 m away from the wind turbines. We show the expected effects of filling the trenches with water. In addition, we study how relatively simple topographic elevations influence the propagation of the seismic energy generated by wind turbines and find that topography does help to reduce wind-turbine-induced seismic noise.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1227-1239
Number of pages13
JournalWind Energy Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 20 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-06-22
Acknowledgements: Rafael Abreu and Christine Thomas acknowledge funding from the Europäischer Fonds für regionale Entwicklung (EFRE) (MISS research project (grant nos. EFRE 0801039 and KEE-2-002A)). Rafael Abreu acknowledges help and continuous support from Stefan Klingen and Christian Maas for installing and running specfem3d-cartesian at the cluster of the University of Münster as well as the help of Hom-Nath Gharti in the process of the mesh creation. The seismic data used as source input were provided by Tobias Neuffer.


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