In Germany, the control systems of wind turbines have failed

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Wind turbine operators in Germany are allegedly faced with a satellite communication failure. Dominik Bertrams, a representative of Tobi Windenergie Verwaltungs, said on Twitter that the monitoring and control systems of thousands of wind turbines stopped due to a malfunction.

The failure occurred early in the morning of February 24, when Russian troops entered the territory of Ukraine, and Bertrams believes that it could have been provoked by Russian hackers. The cause of the problem has not yet been clarified.

Nevertheless, it is unlikely that the attackers attacked German wind turbines directly. As the press secretary of the German Wind Energy Association explained to Handelsblatt, the failure could have occurred due to communication problems with the KA-Sat satellite owned by Viasat.

Recall, as SecurityLab previously reported, Viasat is investigating a possible cyberattack on its systems. Among others, the company’s satellites are also used by the US military, so a failure in the operation of wind turbine control systems in Germany may simply be a “side effect” of a cyber attack on military communications systems.

The KA-Sat satellite network is also used by the satellite communications provider Euroskypark. Wind generators in regions without mobile network coverage use its services for management and remote monitoring.

According to Bertrams’ preliminary calculations, the incident affected about 3 thousand wind turbines. However, according to the Handelsblatt article, the Enercon operator reported that communication channels from Euroskypark are used to monitor 5,8 thousand wind turbines generating a total of 11 GW of electricity.

Germany’s new electricity regulator, Bundesverband Neue Energiewirtschaft, reported that not many wind turbines were affected by the incident, and many of them may switch to other communication channels.

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