Wind power and aviation safety

skeyes sits down with the sector to work out an action plan to increase the available space for wind turbines

skeyes has always supported the wind energy sector and now wants to go a step further by developing additional measures to mitigate the obstacles to aviation safety without jeopardising the safety and efficiency of air traffic. Today, the company organised a round table on this subject with the entire sector, in the presence of ministers Gilkinet and Van der Straeten.

Johan Decuyper, skeyes CEO: “As part of the path we have embarked on and as the next step in the roll-out of our roadmap, I can already announce that the protection zone around the radar at Charleroi will soon be abolished, so that projects closer to the airport can be evaluated.  In addition, skeyes will soon make an interactive map available to the sector to make it easier to consult the protection criteria of skeyes.”

Reconciling aviation safety with investment in more sustainable aviation

skeyes has always attached great importance to its social role and, together with its partners, is keen to contribute to a more sustainable living environment. Wind energy is one of the solutions, as wind turbines make a crucial contribution to the production of green energy.

However, wind turbines may pose a risk to the safety of civil aviation by interfering with aviation radars and beacons and by posing collision risks in the vicinity of airports. Therefore, the installation of wind turbines is restricted in the vicinity of airports and the infrastructure necessary for aviation safety. Although the available space is quite limited, skeyes is investigating the possibilities of using and expanding it as much as possible without compromising the safety of air traffic. The company works closely with the industry to achieve this.

Action plan

skeyes has already taken a number of concrete steps, such as a new calculation method for the civil radio beacons (DVOR - Doppler VHF Omnidirectional Radio Range), which increases the potential space for wind turbines, and the installation of Wind Warm Filters on its radars in Ostend, Brussels and Florennes. These filters reduce the effects of wind turbines on the radars.

skeyes wants to continue its commitment to the sector and undertakes to propose additional concrete measures in an action plan by this autumn. For example, it aims to minimise aviation restrictions at the sites indicated by the wind energy sector.

The action plan also aims to strengthen coordination with wind energy operators.

A proposal for increased coordination with the latter will also be developed, which should lead to a better alignment of their respective roadmaps. Today's round table was also inspiring and enriching in the context of the draft action plan.

The federal government has awarded skeyes a grant of 6.75 million EUR to help with the investments needed to increase the available space for wind turbines.

Dominique Dehaene

skeyes - Communication Manager & Spokesperson

Audrey Dorigo

Porte-Parole, skeyes

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About skeyes

skeyes ensures the safety and efficiency of air traffic in Belgium 24/7. The skeyes air traffic controllers manage over 3,000 aircraft every day, which makes up over a million flight movements per year. The autonomous public company is active at the heart of Europe, in one of the busiest and most complex sections of airspace of the continent. skeyes is active at Brussels Airport and at the airports of Antwerp, Charleroi, Kortrijk, Liège and Ostend. Thanks to its CANAC 2 control centre skeyes manages the flight movements above Belgium and a part of Luxembourg up to an altitude of 7,500 metres (*). The company relies on its nearly 900 experienced staff members who are at the service of their customers: airline companies, airports, the aviation sector and the authorities. skeyes also develops innovating services regarding drones and contributes to a sustainable future of the aviation sector, among other things with respect to the environment.

skeyes is a member of FABEC, a joint airspace block (Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Germany, France and Switzerland) with the aim of improving air navigation efficiency in the heart of Europe in the framework of the Single European Sky.

(*) The upper airspace of the Benelux countries and North West Germany is managed jointly with the EUROCONTROL centre in Maastricht. 


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+32 2 206 21 11

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