26 Mar 2021 .

How Detection and Active Response Curtailment – DARC™– works

DARC (Detection and Active Response Curtailment) bat smart curtailment technology  provides an alternative to the high energy losses associated with blanket curtailment by simultaneously reducing curtailment hours, energy loss, and bat fatalities at wind farms.   

DARC was developed by a team of bat experts and technology and software engineers as a more effective way to protect bats with minimal impact on energy production when compared to blanket curtailment strategies.

DARC has been in development since 2018.

Jim Adams, president of North America operations, said: “What we were trying to solve was a complex puzzle across multiple disciplines. It required a deep understanding of bat behavior and interplay of different curtailment strategies on power generation.”

How DARC works

The video below gives you an idea of how DARC works using SCADA data, meteorological data and the acoustic data to curtail wind turbines when bats are present.


How we tested DARC to prove its effectiveness

Following a proof-of-concept deployment in 2019 and supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) as well as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), we worked with Alliant Energy to install and operate a full system from August to October 2020 at the English Farms wind farm in Iowa.

We tested DARC against minimal and blanket curtailment to prove it works, and DARC is proven to increase wind energy output at wind farms.

Can DARC make a difference to your wind farm project? Contact us at DARC@naturalpower.com to find out.