Principle & How it works
Wind energy is considered to be a form of solar
energy because the sun’s heat on different surfaces of
the earth causes pressure differences. Those pressure
differences cause masses of air to move and those
movements are winds.
The wind turbine is a device that captures and converts
the kinetic energy of the wind into mechanical energy
which is in turn is converted by a generator into
electrical energy. The generation of electricity is the
principal application of wind power today even though
historically it been used directly to propel sailing
ships or converted into mechanical energy for pumping
water or grinding grain. Large-scale wind farms are
typically connected to the local electric power
transmission network, with smaller turbines being used
to provide electricity to isolated locations.
Wind energy as a power source is favored by many
environmentalists as an alternative to fossil fuels, as
it is plentiful, renewable, widely distributed, clean,
and produces no greenhouse gas emissions. Its most
important advantage is that it has reached a mature
stage as a technology.
- The construction of wind farms is not
universally welcomed due to their visual impact
and other effects on the environment such as on
birds and bats.
- Noise is sometimes an issue.
- As with most renewable energy
solutions, their high capital cost is sometimes
- The stability of the energy produced
is similar to solar energy due to climate
effects. A study in Denmark showed that a
national grid should not compromise more than a
20 % component of wind energy due to its
Where it's working (Syria, Abroad)
The modern wind power industry began in 1979 with the
production of wind turbines by Danish manufacturers
Kuriant, Vestas, Nordtank, and Bonus. These early
turbines were small by today's standards, with
capacities of 20 to 30 kW each. Since then, they have
increased greatly in size, while wind turbine production
has expanded to many countries all over the world. There
are now many thousands of wind turbines operating, with
a total capacity of 73,904 MW of which wind power in
Europe accounted for 65 % in 2006. Wind power is the
fastest growing energy source and world wind generation
capacity more than quadrupled between 2000 and 2006 with
81 % of wind power installations are in the US and
Europe. In 2007, the countries with the highest total
wind turbines installed capacity were Germany, the
United States, Spain, India, and China.
Over the few last years, wind energy has been used in
several areas of the country for the sole purpose of
pumping water. There are about 4000 wind turbines in
Kalamon, Homs and other areas of the region. All of
these turbines are used for water pumping and range 3-5m
in diameter and 10-15m in height.
Wind energy for electrical purposes is extremely rare
and the only publically known installation in Syria is
one 150Kw turbine at Quineitra which is connected to the
grid. There are some small locally manufactured turbines
available in the market.
Future Development & integration
By 2010, the World Wind Energy Association expects 160GW
of capacity to be installed worldwide, up from 73.9 GW
at the end of 2006, implying an anticipated net growth
rate of more than 21 % per year. The major technology
developments enabling wind power commercialization have
already been made. There is, of course, room for
refinements and improvements in the turbines themselves.
There also opportunities for new storage methods. One
such method is the Compressed Air Energy Storage method
where off-peak energy in the form of compressed air is
buried underground and later release when demand
Local Factors &
The success of a wind turbine depends on a site’s wind
speeds. Those wind speeds are higher with increasing
height. Several studies have been prepared for the
potential of exploiting wind energy in Syria. These
studies show extremely good possibilities for Syria.
The following map shows the locations of 14 metrological
stations that have been setup around the country to
survey the most suitable areas for the installation of
A study for the Ministry of Electricity concluded that
the potential wind energy in Syria is about 85,000 MW.
Because of practical conditions, however, only 2,500 MW
is available for exploitation. This is still a
relatively high capacity especially if it is compared
with the 7,000 MW total nominal installed capacity of
the Syrian electrical grid.
There are several areas in Syria which have a relatively
good mean wind speed , these are illustrated on the
The following table, published by the National Energy
Research Centre, Syria, illustrates the mean wind speed
recorded at the installed metrological stations for two
years in some promising locations in the country:
Annual wind speed