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PeterSibley
02-06-2018, 07:28 PM
https://youtu.be/XiefORPamLU

This would be very suitable for Papua New Guinea .

David W Pratt
02-06-2018, 07:30 PM
Or maybe Puerto Rico?

PeterSibley
02-06-2018, 07:39 PM
I don't know Puerto Rico but I've worked in the mountains in PNG.

Phil Y
02-06-2018, 07:51 PM
The Ok Tedi mine runs a small hydro power generator-bigger than that one, but not huge. Plenty of places in PNG where that would work.

Reynard38
02-06-2018, 07:54 PM
How about someplace with an 8’ tidal range?

The Bigfella
02-06-2018, 07:55 PM
Looks great... but also looks expensive compared to the pica hydro setups I've seen.

https://photos.smugmug.com/Thai16/i-QKSF4kX/0/e9580bb9/X4/0s3r-X4.jpg

https://photos.smugmug.com/Thai16/i-cGVmmpg/0/52ca066d/X3/0s3s-X3.jpg

The only electricity we had in the refugee camp was from a sluice-type one... and it was horrible power - varied all over the place in voltage.

skuthorp
02-06-2018, 08:52 PM
When the SEC transmission was established in Victoria many farms had run Pelton wheels for years. They were I believe legally required to destroy them so as to force farms to connect.

ahp
02-06-2018, 09:01 PM
When the SEC transmission was established in Victoria many farms had run Pelton wheels for years. They were I believe legally required to destroy them so as to force farms to connect.

What a waste!

In the 1920's my Dad worked in a factory in Batavia, Illinois, along side the Fox River. Each machine tool in the factory had its own little water turbine under the floor. To turn it on the machinist simply opened a valve.

PeterSibley
02-06-2018, 09:07 PM
A neighbour set up a successful 5kw Banki Turbine in our local creek and operated it until he moved to town. Banki is high volume ,low head.

Garret
02-06-2018, 09:28 PM
This looks good. Only issue I see is fish not being able to go upstream.

Sailor
02-06-2018, 09:59 PM
I don't know about that. This is a diversion they say, the fish could still climb the river where they always did. Or didn't.

john l
02-07-2018, 02:00 AM
Micro Hydro is currently where Solar Cells were 20 years ago, but will gain momentum quickly. In the US, the biggest obstacle is regulatory compliance dealing with water diversion and fish population . Laws in place are focused on industrial power generation . This restricts permitting on personal power generation. In NY state NYSERDA is supporting Bard College and its environmental and public policy departments who are working language modifications to laws currently on the books to support legality and adoption of micro hydro. I ve seen start-ups that are prototyping back up power and peAk shaving power systems based on secondary water tanks in buildings over 20 stories. They claim turbine efficiency that generates net positive power after pumps send water back up to tanks. Hard to believe, but they claim their prototypes will prove it. Micro Hydro enthusiasts claim there is enough currently available moving water in states like NY to address total power needs. This space is evolving quickly.

Phil Y
02-07-2018, 02:16 AM
Perpetual motion at last. Wonderful stuff.

PeterSibley
02-07-2018, 03:22 AM
Interesting John.

Garret
02-07-2018, 07:34 AM
Another issue with micro-hydro in the US is that many power companies have rights to "XYZ river & all its tributaries" - so you have to 1) get permission to install the site & deal with all the regulatory fun & 2) get all your ducks in a row for hooking to the grid.

The latter has never been simple & I can't see the current congress making it any easier. Of course if you're off-grid, #2 is not an issue.

ishmael
02-07-2018, 11:46 AM
Before the modern power grid there were quite a few small dams here in Maine. First used for grist mills then later electric. One movement recently has been to remove old dams because of the ecological impact up and down stream. That can be significant to both fish runs, ala Sailor's post, and all manner of critters and plants.

There's no single attribution for "perfection is the enemy of the good" but what's that mean in practice? Do we build, for example, more wind farms without full knowledge of their impact on bird migration? Bird migration and wind patterns tend to coincide. And what constitutes 'full knowledge'?

Today it's statistics, but anyone who knows statistics knows they are dicey measures at best. Measures that are easily manipulable to grind an axe, and often mistaken because of ideological blinders. But, that's what we have.

As for small-scale alternative energy, that has minimal impact, I'm hopeful for both passive and active solar. Sol Invictus! Now there's a pagan Roman God(Unconquered Sun) I can support! :)

Garret
02-07-2018, 12:07 PM
Before the modern power grid there were quite a few small dams here in Maine. First used for grist mills then later electric. One movement recently has been to remove old dams because of the ecological impact up and down stream. That can be significant to both fish runs, ala Sailor's post, and all manner of critters and plants.

There's no single attribution for "perfection is the enemy of the good" but what's that mean in practice? Do we build, for example, more wind farms without full knowledge of their impact on bird migration? Bird migration and wind patterns tend to coincide. And what constitutes 'full knowledge'?

Today it's statistics, but anyone who knows statistics knows they are dicey measures at best. Measures that are easily manipulable to grind an axe, and often mistaken because of ideological blinders. But, that's what we have.

As for small-scale alternative energy, that has minimal impact, I'm hopeful for both passive and active solar. Sol Invictus! Now there's a pagan Roman God(Unconquered Sun) I can support! :)

There are always impacts. First, this design is a bypass - so no damn in the river. Second - even solar has issues - particularly storm runoff on larger arrays - as the panels concentrate rainwater into small areas rather than letting it hit the whole field. Rooftop mount prevents this, but not everyone has a good roof for it.

Passive solar is simply a no-brainer. Any site that has southern exposure (northern if you're south of the equator) can use it. Proper design is key though - just adding windows will not do it. You need the solar gain measured against the cubic footage of the house + plenty of thermal mass to reduce temperature fluctuations.

Daniel Noyes
02-07-2018, 12:19 PM
Looks great... but also looks expensive compared to the pica hydro setups I've seen.

https://photos.smugmug.com/Thai16/i-QKSF4kX/0/e9580bb9/X4/0s3r-X4.jpg

https://photos.smugmug.com/Thai16/i-cGVmmpg/0/52ca066d/X3/0s3s-X3.jpg

The only electricity we had in the refugee camp was from a sluice-type one... and it was horrible power - varied all over the place in voltage.


+1

local tech is best, Ill bet that western design will be plugged with sticks and rocks and out of use/ broken down in a season or 2 while the local tech keeps on working.

ishmael
02-07-2018, 12:31 PM
My apologies, Garret. I wasn't clear. I think the tech Peter posted is way cool! As you say, it will still have unintended, unforeseen consequences, but it looks a helluva lot better than a simple dam. My comments, as typical of me, were more species of musings on things unintended, and how we humans deal with them.

Passive solar is indeed a 'no-brainer'. The property where I sit, with an engineered solar house, would mostly heat itself - even through a Maine winter. But then I'd miss out on the pleasures and pains of my wood stove! ;)

stromborg
02-07-2018, 01:21 PM
Pretty cool evolution of the old-time waterwheel. I can't help but wonder about how the system adjusts to flood and drought conditions but it sure seems like a relatively low impact way to provide power in remote areas.

On the subject of unintended consequences, I half listened to a story on NPR yesterday about cities trying to be more "green". Part of it was about how a number of buildings with large windows to make use of natural light ended up using more electricity to cool the building because of all the heat gain. Whoops. Lots of work going on in the world of small scale power generation but the big monopolies are fighting back. It will be interesting to see where we are in 10 or 20 years.

Garret
02-07-2018, 01:30 PM
My apologies, Garret. I wasn't clear. I think the tech Peter posted is way cool! As you say, it will still have unintended, unforeseen consequences, but it looks a helluva lot better than a simple dam. My comments, as typical of me, were more species of musings on things unintended, and how we humans deal with them.

Passive solar is indeed a 'no-brainer'. The property where I sit, with an engineered solar house, would mostly heat itself - even through a Maine winter. But then I'd miss out on the pleasures and pains of my wood stove! ;)

No apology needed. Great stuff & always good to see people thinking. I had a passive solar house (since sold) that heated on about 1 cord of wood per year. Even better was the fantastic light inside.

ahp
02-07-2018, 01:59 PM
How about someplace with an 8’ tidal range?

Where I grew up, on the coast of Connecticut, there is a 7 ft tidal range. Within 10 miles I could show the location of three colonial tide mills.

john welsford
02-07-2018, 02:52 PM
No apology needed. Great stuff & always good to see people thinking. I had a passive solar house (since sold) that heated on about 1 cord of wood per year. Even better was the fantastic light inside.

I've built two passive solar heated houses, our daughter and her family now live in the second one which has proven to be very effective. It has a wood burner to boost the heating when needed but she tells me that most of the winter they have a couple of windows open to moderate the temperature. I'm planning to build another for myself sometime in the next few years so am researching low energy input eco house design. Its a fascinating field with a lot going on. I wont be off grid, the start current on a big 440 volt motor powering a planer in my shop is just too much for most off grid systems, but you can bet that my power bill will be lower than most.
On mini hydro, the "Rainbow power company" in Nimbin Australia has some really neat little micro hydro systems, not as big as the one in the op, but workable on just half a cusec or so.

John Welsford

Foster Price
02-07-2018, 05:42 PM
Very interesting - small scale water use like this if paired with "super conductors" (yes I know they are still in the early stages of development and not practical at the moment) has a lot of potential, particularly here in NZ

The Bigfella
02-07-2018, 06:43 PM
Pretty cool evolution of the old-time waterwheel. I can't help but wonder about how the system adjusts to flood and drought conditions but it sure seems like a relatively low impact way to provide power in remote areas.

On the subject of unintended consequences, I half listened to a story on NPR yesterday about cities trying to be more "green". Part of it was about how a number of buildings with large windows to make use of natural light ended up using more electricity to cool the building because of all the heat gain. Whoops. Lots of work going on in the world of small scale power generation but the big monopolies are fighting back. It will be interesting to see where we are in 10 or 20 years.

I mentioned the pica hydro systems in Asia in my earlier post. The ones in remote areas there are very low tech and I'm told lead to a lot of deaths with guys trying to fix problems. Flood flow would appear to be what was impacting the voltage at the refugee camp I was in. Here's the hydro power station. Note the guy just to the right of the tree.... he's working on a problem. The power output varied hugely, despite the sluice gates used to try and regulate it.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Northern%20Thailand/058.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Northern%20Thailand/058.jpg.html)

Whilst Pffftbucket still allows me to share images... here's some more

The voltage regulator for that is in this temple (where I was sleeping)... hence I could see the variations in output. It's below the TV. There was another (battery powered) 12" TV in the camp "cafe" - and that's about all the electrical equipment I saw in a camp of 16,000. There may have been more generators that I didn't see.... but money was tight.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Northern%20Thailand/058-1.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Northern%20Thailand/058-1.jpg.html)

This one was beside the road in a remote part of Sumatra. Bamboo pipe to regulate and direct the flow and a waterwheel attached to the generator.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Last%20Java%20and%20Sumatra/020-5.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Last%20Java%20and%20Sumatra/020-5.jpg.html)

There's a couple more in this shot... a lovely village in a remote part of Laos that I've been to a couple of times.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Last%20Laos/101_1.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Last%20Laos/101_1.jpg.html)

That stream flows into the Mekong. Many other villages in the region will now be getting power from the new coal-fired power station about 50 km away... but the road they built to this village didn't last a year before the landslides wiped it out, so I think they will miss out

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Last%20Laos/village2mekong.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Last%20Laos/village2mekong.jpg.html)

Every one of the systems I've seen in Asia, bar one, has been built on a shoestring budget... money is an issue.

The Bigfella
02-07-2018, 06:54 PM
This one was built with aid from a wealthy American benefactor. He and his wife funded a medical facility in an area that is cut off from the rest of the world more than it isn't. On the Burma - Thai border.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Thai%202013/133_zps5600206d.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Thai%202013/133_zps5600206d.jpg.html)

I like the way the generator is above the water.

http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff112/igatenby/Thai%202013/134_zps37439e29.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/igatenby/media/Thai%202013/134_zps37439e29.jpg.html)