Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Department of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences

Content Description

1 online resource (1 volume) : color illustrations, color maps.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Liming Zhou


Wind power plants, Winds, Earth temperature

Subject Categories

Atmospheric Sciences


Operating wind turbines enhance near surface turbulence and alter the exchanges of surface energy, water, and momentum, thus affecting local micrometeorology. Climatic impacts of three wind farms in northern Illinois are assessed using land surface temperature (LST) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data onboard the Terra and Aqua satellites for the period 2003-2013. Changes in LST between two periods (before and after construction of the wind turbines) and between wind farm pixels (WFPs) and nearby non wind farm pixels (NNWFPs) are quantified. An increase in LST is observed at nighttime over each wind farm, with the pattern of this warming effect generally spatially coupled with the wind turbines, while there is no apparent impact on daytime LST. The nighttime LST warming effect varies with the seasons, with the strongest warming in winter months of December, January, and February, and the tightest spatial coupling in summer months of June, July, and August.