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Colorado lab tries to keep birds safe from wind turbines

By: The Associated Press
March 2, 2016 Updated: March 2, 2016 at 9:40 pm
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photo - NREL researcher Jason Roadman and veterinarian Seth Oster  release a Golden Eagle from a lift during research at the National Wind Technology Center The Auburn University eagles, trainers and a veterinarian are participating in research to help the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory develop a radar and visual systems that prevent bird strikes with wind turbines. The research is a collaboration project with Laufer Wind, RES America, NREL and University of Auburn.  
(Photo by DENNIS SCHROEDER / NREL)
NREL researcher Jason Roadman and veterinarian Seth Oster release a Golden Eagle from a lift during research at the National Wind Technology Center The Auburn University eagles, trainers and a veterinarian are participating in research to help the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory develop a radar and visual systems that prevent bird strikes with wind turbines. The research is a collaboration project with Laufer Wind, RES America, NREL and University of Auburn. (Photo by DENNIS SCHROEDER / NREL) 

DENVER — Colorado's National Renewable Energy Lab is working on a project aimed at reducing the number of bird deaths by wind turbines.

The Denver Post reports that the laboratory in Golden is working with radar developer Laufer Wind to test a technology that shuts down the turbines once a bird is detected nearby.

The researchers are using a real-time identification system that can determine what an airborne object is and allows the turbines to be deactivated before they come in to contact with a bird.

To test the system, researchers equipped golden eagles with GPS devices and collected data from several flight tests in February.

Lab researcher Jason Roadman says the results will help determine whether the systems can be implemented at wind farms across the state.

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