Deutsche Windtechnik gets approval for aircraft detection lighting in German offshore wind first

Operations and maintenance (O&M) provider Deutsche Windtechnik has been granted the world’s first approval to use an aircraft detection light system (ADLS) at an offshore wind farm.

It had already upgraded all turbines at the 111MW Nordergründe wind farm in the German North Sea, and has now received permitting approval for operation of the ADLS.

Germany was the first European country to make aircraft detection lighting systems (ADLS) mandatory for turbines that require obstruction markings. By 31 December 2023, nearshore turbines in the North Sea and all Baltic Sea turbines need to be retrofitted with such systems – one year after they must be fitted to onshore wind turbines that require markings under air traffic law.

The O&M provider explained that the hardware of the offshore system is only slightly different from the onshore version. The transponder receiver module installed inside the nacelle is identical, but the antenna unit of the offshore system that is mounted on the turbine roof is made of materials that are more resistant to corrosion. 

Nordergründe wind farm is owned by insurance firm Gothaer Group (40%), infrastructure group John Laing and renewables developer Wpd (both 30%). The wind farm off the coast of Lower Saxony consists of 18 of Senvion’s 6.2M 126 turbines and was fully commissioned in 2017.

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