Wind turbines on weather radar

U.S. National Weather Service

Weather radar from Aug. 2, 2016.

Sometimes when you’re looking at weather radar on a clear, calm night, you’ll see areas that look like it should be raining or storming.

It doesn’t make sense, since the skies you’re watching don’t match up.

What you’re seeing on the radar may be wind turbine sites.

Erin Huntimer, Basin Electric project coordinations representative and self-proclaimed weather nerd, asked the U.S. National Weather Service – Bismarck on Facebook why turbine locations show up on radar.

This was their response:

Erin, the lower atmosphere stabilizes through the evening and overnight with cooling. This traps or ducts the radar energy to remain close to the ground to bounce off objects such as wind turbines. This is also called ground clutter.

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