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R.E. Generators: Hydropower Prime Movers and Others

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1 R.E. Generators: Hydropower Prime Movers and Others
Unit 9a Source:

2 Use Policy This material was developed by Timothy J. Wilhelm, P.E., Kankakee Community College, with funding from the National Science Foundation as part of ATE Grant No All materials in this presentation are designed and intended for educational use, only. They may not be used for any publication or commercial purposes. Source:

3 Author, Editors/Reviewers
Author: Timothy J. Wilhelm, P.E., Kankakee Community College Editors/Reviewers / Modifiers: Chris Miller Heartland Community College Source:

4 Objectives Students will be able to describe, in very simple terms, the so-called hydrologic cycle, and its relationship to hydropower technology. Students will be able to name a “kinetic” type of water turbine, and briefly describe, in very simple terms, how it operates. Students will be able to name a “water-head” type of water turbine, and briefly describe, in very simple terms, how it operates. Source:

5 Objectives Students will be able to mathematically convert feet of water head into pounds-per-square-inch of pressure Students will be able to describe, in very simple terms, at least one method of extracting energy from the ocean. Source:

6 Hydro Power History

7 Hydropower History Hydropower used by the Greeks to turn water wheels for grinding wheat into flour, more than 2,000 years ago. Mid-1770s -- French hydraulic and military engineer Bernard Forest de Bélidor wrote Architecture Hydraulique, a four-volume work describing vertical- and horizontal-axis machines.

8 Hydropower History Source:

9 Hydropower History

10 Hydropower History

11 Hydro Electric Beginnings

12 Hydroelectric Beginnings
Michigan's Grand Rapids electricity (DC) generated by a dynamo belted to a water turbine at the Wolverine Chair Factory, lit up 16 Brush- arc lamps.

13 Hydroelectric Beginnings
Niagara Falls city street lamps powered by a brushed dynamo connected to an old flour mill drive.

14 Hydroelectric Beginnings
Hydroelectric power plant operating on the Fox River in Appleton, Wisconsin. Source:

15 The War of the Currents

16 The Wizard Who Spat on the Floor


18 The Eccentric Serb Source:

19 Source:

20 Source:

21 Source: http://api. ning

22 “In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue…” The 1893 Columbian Exposition, World’s Fair, Chicago

23 Niagara Falls – Nov. 16, 1896 – Westinghouse and Tesla Send Electric Power to Buffalo, NY

24 Hydro Power Fundamentals

25 Solar Energy + Force of Gravity = Hydropower

26 Hydropower Fundamentals
Kinetic-type primer movers “Water Wheels” Extract energy from stream-flow Head or Pressure-type Prime Movers High (inlet) Elevation – Low (discharge) Elevation = “Head” PSI(pressure) = Feet of Water (head) X 0.433 “A pint’s a pound the world around.” 1 Ft3 = 7.48 gallons; 1 gallon = 8.34 pounds 8.34 lbs/gal x 7.48 gal/ft3 x 1 ft2 / 144 in2 = 0.433

27 Hydropower Fundamentals

28 Hydro Prime Mover Types: Head-type Turbines
Low-Head and High-Flow “Reaction Turbines” Kinetic turbines (water wheels, and other flow converters) Propeller turbines Francis turbines (like a squirrel-cage centrifugal turbine) High-Head and Low-Flow “Impulse Turbines” Pelton Turbines Cross-flow Turbines

29 Turbine Types and Applications
30 Meters 98 Feet or 5 Meters 16 Feet 300 Meters 984 Feet

30 Hydro Prime Mover Types: Kinetic

31 Low-Head Propeller Turbine
Low-Head = less than 16 feet Source:

32 Medium Head Francis Runner

33 High Head Pelton Turbine


35 Tesla Designed a Total System
Bladeless hydro-frictional turbine 3-Phase alternator Distribution transformers Wireless transmission of electric power, to all points on the earth World peace and harmony

36 Tesla’s Frictional Turbine

37 Source:

38 Creating Water Head: Impoundment

39 Creating Water Head: Diversion

40 Hydro Plant Sizes Large Hydropower
Although definitions vary, DOE defines large hydropower as a capacity of more than 30 MW. Small Hydropower Although definitions vary, DOE defines small hydropower as a capacity of 100 KW to 30 MW. Micro Hydropower A micro hydropower plant has a capacity of up to 100 kilowatts. A small or micro-hydroelectric power system can produce enough electricity for a home, farm, ranch, or small village.

41 Micro-Hydro

42 Micro Hydro Typically need at least 3 feet of head and 20 gpm of flow

43 Harris Micro-hydro Source:

44 Stream Engine Micro-hydro

45 Micro-hydro Installation
Head (feet) x Flow (gpm) / 10 = Watts [For example, 30 gpm x 100 feet/ 10 = 300 watts]

46 Other Hydro-Related Prime Movers

47 Ocean Energy The tidal forces and thermal storage of the ocean provide a major energy source Wave action adds to the extractable surface energy Major ocean currents (like the Gulf Stream) may be exploited to extract energy with rotors Ocean energy is even more treacherous than wind energy. The principle is similar, but the increased density of water over air means a higher potential for destruction. Source:

48 Ocean Energy: Tidal Energy
Tides are produced by gravitational forces of the moon and sun and the Earth’s rotation Existing and possible sites: France: La Rance river estuary 240 MW station England: Severn River Canada: Passamaquoddy in the Bay of Fundy (1935 attempt failed) California: high potential along the northern coast Environmental, economic, and esthetic aspects have delayed implementation

49 Barage Tidal Power

50 Tidal-Stream Generators

51 Tidal-Stream Generators

52 Tidal-Stream Generators

53 Ocean Energy: Wave Energy
Salter “ducks” rock up and down as the wave passes beneath it. This oscillating mechanical energy is converted to electrical energy A Wavegen, wave-driven, air compressor or oscillating water column (OWC) spins a two-way Wells turbine to produce electricity The Salter duck concept has fallen into disfavor due to the difficulties in maintenance. Operation is subject to large storms that may destroy the system.

54 Wave Power Source: Source:

55 Ocean Energy: OTEC (Ocean Thermal Electric Conversion)
OTEC requires some 40°F temperature difference between the surface and deep waters to extract energy Open-cycle plants vaporize warm water and condense it using the cold sea water, yielding potable water and electricity from turbines-driven alternators Closed-cycle units evaporate ammonia at 78°F to drive a turbine and an alternator Years ago, an OTEC was tested off Port Canaveral without great success. The system works best along a seamount.


57 A Final, Related Prime Mover

58 Energy from the Earth’s Forces
Winds, waves, tides, and thermal gradients are renewable energy sources that might be valuable in some areas.

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