Friday, April 23, 2010

Lebanon's Vertical Axis Wind Turbine

The first phase of a homemade prototype Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) that was constructed in Lebanon. It stands near 6 meters high (~19.68 feet ). Made of no more than galvanized sheets welded together, galvanized water pipes and a few self lubricated bearings.
 Homemade Helical Twist (VAWT)


In September 2009 I have moved back to Bayssour-Lebanon to settle and live their permanently with my family after being away working in the Arabian Gulf most of my life. Empowered with a university degree from the University of Arizona in Electrical Engineering and 15+ years of diversified  and extensive experience in the electrical field. I found myself in a new community that lacks continuous electrical power due to power rational which was the result of the more than 15 years of civil war.

Having listened to many people's miseries and frustration due to the lack of continuous electric power and dependency on privately purchased power from emergency generators that adds a heavy burden on people's cost of living, I've decided to utilize my experience in the electrical field and employ my knowledge to make the most of one of the greatest free natural resources that Lebanon possesses in addition to its breath taking mountain's view and cultural heritage.

I have researched and observed wind directions by watching trees, cloth lines and scattered flags. What was shocking to me is the fact that despite having high mountains, the average wind speed in Lebanon was around 5 m/s which is far less than the desired 10-12m/s wind speed requirements for power generation using wind turbines (that meant doubling the cost of the wind turbine!). There were some exceptions in areas where wind paths were continuous and wind existed 80-90% of the time.

Our house is at an altitude of ~750 meters above sea level with its panoramic view for up to 30 kilometers. However, the average wind speed at the highest point of the building was around 3m/s.when measured with an electronic wind speed meter. Yet another obstacle that needs to be conquered.
Being determined to conquer these obstacles, I have reviewed a lot of vertical and horizontal wind turbines on the Net in an attempt to buy an use a ready made wind turbine that fulfills my power requirements.

Unfortunately, most of these turbines were designed for areas where the average wind speed is around 10-12m/s or for use in open fields. The noise level is too high to be ignored (can be as high as 90 dBA).

The alternative solution was to build my own wind turbine that I can utilize and control in residential areas without disturbing the neighbors with high noise and in areas where wind speed are below average.

I have picked one design of a Vertical Axis Wind Turbine and decided to start experimenting on this prototype, then to modify it on two stages in order to give torque and speed. Luckily, My cousin had a turning workshop that helped me a lot in addition to his mechanics experience.

After setting an initial budget and completing the initial design drawings, I went and purchased a few locally available Galvanized sheets and water pipes of various sizes then started to assemble the Vertical  Axis Wind Turbine.

The first dilemma that I have encountered when we started to assemble the turbine together was; power rational and electric power shortage which meant; dependency on an emergency generator and increased cost!

You can help just by emailing this link to your your email from the tap below then sending to your friends.


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