Glare viewed from the air traffic control tower at Manchester/Boston Regional Airport. (April 27, 2012, at 8:15 a.m.)

Sandia researchers—competing in an international pool of uni­versities, corporations, and government labs—captured three R&D100 Awards in this year’s con­test. R&D Magazine presents the awards each year to researchers whom its editors and independ­ent judging panels determine have developed the year’s 100 most outstanding advances in applied technologies. The sole criterion for winning, according to the magazine, is “demonstrable techno­logical significance compared with competing products and technologies.”

Sandia winning entries were:

As alternative energies spread, many agencies are raising concerns over glare from solar energy installations and their impacts on pilots, air traffic controllers, and motorists. SGHAT ad­dresses new federal guidelines requiring quantified assessments of glare from proposed solar instal­lations. The web-based tool can quickly locate a site, outline the proposed array, and identify glare throughout the year, calculating the glare’s intensity and size to predict potential ocular hazards. The tool also can predict annual energy production of proposed arrays and evaluate alternative designs, layouts, and locations to identify those configurations that maximize energy production while mitigating glare impact.

Read the Sandia news release.