Hydro turbines convert water pressure into mechanical energy. When used with an electrical generator, the movement of the turbine’s runners or propellers turns a shaft to produce electricity. There are three basic types of hydro turbines: impulse, reaction, and submersible propeller. All produce clean energy or green energy - power from renewable resources. Impulse turbines produce electricity when nozzles spray jets of water from a penstock onto the buckets of a runner. These hydro...
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Q & A on Hydro Turbines

We asked our users for their input on Hydro Turbines. Here are the results of 95 users familiar with Hydro Turbines.

Who Took Our Poll? | Design Trends | Applications and Use | Features | Buying Advice |

Who Took Our Poll?Top

Design TrendsTop

Q:
What new technologies are influencing hydro turbine design?
15 answers
Answers:
New turbines such as the Difgen are opening up a wider range of applications for hydro power. These coupled with the move to more standardized (smaller) turbines are reducing cost and delivery times, making small hydro more economical.
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Efficiency, costs, ease of use and maintenance, ease of installation, small capacity (50- 150 KW), rather low head, rather big flow (estimate 0.5 - 2 m3/sec?)
~Klaas M, Engineering Consultant, Dokkum, NL
New hydraulic design tools, innovations such as compact water to wire packages.
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
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Q:
From your perspective, which companies are creating the most innovative hydro turbines?
10 answers
Answers:
I don't know a lot about turbines and the companies that make them, but a small company called Canyon Hydro seems to be the leader in making small turbines.
~Ray M, Engineer, Sheridan, WY
Ossberger, Gugler, Hydrowest, Gilkes, Schumann, Roth.
~Klaas M, Engineering Consultant, Dokkum, NL
Andritz, Ossberger, Orengine-gea, Voith, BFL
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
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Applications and UseTop

Q:
Please share with us any “non-standard” applications that hydro turbines have been used for.
8 answers
Answers:
The difgen hydro turbine, with which we are working, places hydro turbines within pressurized systems such as potable water systems allowing pressure drops to be used to create electrical energy.
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
I use this turbine for a small green house for education for my school.
~Haukur T, Builder/Contractor, Snaefellsbaer, Iceland
I've seen turbines placed in irrigation structures to recover power.
~Ray M, Engineer, Sheridan, WY
In water systems to power the pumps down line.
~Neil W, Manufacturer, Vanisle, Canada
Low current geared to 1800 RPM
~Thomas Morris, Quality Control, Algonquin, IL
Installation in streams.
~Mark S, Maintenance Superintendent, Owasso, OK
In culinary pipe lines.
~Dennis, Generation Supervisor, T, WY
Driving heat pumps
~Architect/Builder/Contractor, Maresfield, Great Britain

Q:
Do you know of any disastrous mistakes that occurred due to the incorrect usage of hydro turbines?
4 answers
Answers:
Incorrect depth install which will result in siltation.
~Mark S, Maintenance Superintendent, Owasso, OK
Too few number of units for the flow regime.
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
Several. They are quite well documented.
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Bolts loosed
~Engineering, Consulting, Westwego, LA

Q:
What hydro turbines have you used?
29 answers
Answers:
14 mph river off pier back yard river never freezes; 2 foot deep at lowest level. Using fan blades and 380 watt 12v wind turbine alternator at this point.
~Thomas Morris, Quality Control, Algonquin, IL
Small ones, for small projects. The project never actually got built in part because of the limited number of small turbines available.
~Ray M, Engineer, Sheridan, WY
• Pelton • Turgo • Francis • Kaplan, Propeller, Bulb, Tube, Straflo • Tyson, Gorlov (Freeflow types)
~Marketing/Sales, PEMBROKE, Canada
Francis turbines with wicket gates and sleeve valve bypass for rapid load shedding.
~Engineering, Design, Penticton, Canada
Francis Turbines, Kaplan Turbines, Pelton Turbines, Pump-Turbines
~Engineering, Consulting, DONCASTER, United Kingdom
Cross0flow, Kaplan, Francis, variable blade, double regulated
~Project Management, Arlington, VA
We have made castings for most Hydro Turbine suppliers.
~Larry M, Marketing/Sales, Tacoma, WA
Archimedes Screw, Axial Flow, Francis
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Small back yard penten wheel types
~Neil W, Manufacturer, Vanisle, Canada
Hydrokinetic vertical axis turbines
~Engineering, Faculty/Staff/Student, Thessaloniki, Greece
Francis, Pit Type, and Bulb Type
~Engineering, Consulting, Lahore, Pakistan
I want to use pelton turbines
~Dondapati Gowri Shiva Prasad P, Photographer, Hyderabad, India
Pelton, Francis and Caplain
~Dennis, Generation Supervisor, T, WY
Cross flow, Pelton, Francis
~Engineering, Design, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Francis, Pelton, Crossflow
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
Ossberger, Valley Hydro
~Architect/Builder/Contractor, Maresfield, Great Britain
4.5 kW 2 m/s rate flow
~General Corporate Mgmt, BARILOCHE, Argentina
Pelton, Banki, Kaplan
~Francisco H, Engineering Consultant, Quezon City, Philippines
Francis, Kaplan, Pelton
~Avnish Kumar G, Marketing/Sales, Gurgaon, India
Kaplan, Pelton France
~Maintenance/Facilities Management, Oregon City, OR
Pelton and Francis
~George M, Builder/Contractor, Mount Vernon, WA
Crossflow / Banki
~Engineering, Faculty/Staff/Student, Dundee, Great Britain
3MW Francis
~Engineering, Consulting, Brooks, CA
Power Pal
~Haukur T, Builder/Contractor, Snaefellsbaer, Iceland
Rocky mtn
~David H, General Management, Vernon, Canada
Regular
~Engineering, Consulting, Westwego, LA
Metpro
~Architect/Builder/Contractor, Beaverton, OR
Voith
~Birecik, Turkey
Voith
~Mark S, Maintenance Superintendent, Owasso, OK

FeaturesTop

Q:
What would your design or feature "wish list" be for these products?
16 answers
Answers:
I wish there were more information available on off the shelf turbines (basically a pump curve in reverse). It seems that I had a hard time trying to determine the optimal water delivery design to match the turbines.
~Ray M, Engineer, Sheridan, WY
We do not design but help the end user make the correct design adjustments that help make the best castings.
~Larry M, Marketing/Sales, Tacoma, WA
Use of lubrication free bearing material for distributor rings and rod guide.
~Avnish Kumar G, Marketing/Sales, Gurgaon, India
Simple design, local built, and recycled material like plastic molded.
~Neil W, Manufacturer, Vanisle, Canada
50-150 KW Low head ( 2mtr - 10 mtr) Flow (est. 0,5 - 2 m3/sec)
~Klaas M, Engineering Consultant, Dokkum, NL
Advancements in electronics, blade design, and generators
~Engineering, Design, Flemington, NJ
Problem is not technology but government.
~Architect/Builder/Contractor, Maresfield, Great Britain
Electrical Parts for mini hydro turbines.
~Engineering, Design, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Electro-mechanical load control system.
~Francisco H, Engineering Consultant, Quezon City, Philippines
Small scale hydro power stations
~Research & Development, Beppu, Japan
Simple to maintain, long lasting
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Efficiencies on hydro turbines
~Dennis, Generation Supervisor, T, WY
DC for safety and looks.
~Thomas Morris, Quality Control, Algonquin, IL
All in one package
~David H, General Management, Vernon, Canada
More portability
~Mark S, Maintenance Superintendent, Owasso, OK
Compact design
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils

Buying AdviceTop

Q:
Do you have any advice for people relative to buying or using hydro turbines?
7 answers
Answers:
Do your research. Understand what you are actually looking to achieve. Accept that hydro power schemes are long life and so initial costs tend to be high relative to less long lasting schemes such as wind and PV.
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Lots of research, know your water flows, do they have lots of debris during high water, enough flow after high water.
~Dennis, Generation Supervisor, T, WY
Quality comes at a price. Fit is very important, can they supply what you need or what they only offer?
~Larry M, Marketing/Sales, Tacoma, WA
Consider efficiency and durability, spare parts, history of manufacturer, guarantees.
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
Please use hydro turbines having non greasing and oiling type of bush.
~Avnish Kumar G, Marketing/Sales, Gurgaon, India
Make sure that turbine is engineered to be site-specific.
~George M, Builder/Contractor, Mount Vernon, WA
Buy what you can maintain.
~Neil W, Manufacturer, Vanisle, Canada

Q:
Is there any advice you want to share with users to help them avoid common errors in selection or usage of hydro turbines?
6 answers
Answers:
With increasing use of run of river sites always bear in mind what the river can become and what it can deliver in the worst of all floods. Design for these worst events as when they come there will be nothing you can do to protect your investment.
~Austin F, Engineer, Leeds, United Kingdom
Proper advice from both turbine designers and manufacturers, to the satisfaction of the end user who should also be knowledgeable about hydro turbines. No unilateral decision on selection.
~Cesar S., Prjoect Development, Mandaluyong, Phils
Take the time needed to cover all of the issues involved BEFORE proceeding with a hydro project.
~George M, Builder/Contractor, Mount Vernon, WA
If you have lots of debris enough head and fall maybe consider a pelton.
~Dennis, Generation Supervisor, T, WY
Give your self time, do not put schedule above quality etc.
~Larry M, Marketing/Sales, Tacoma, WA
You don't need to be big.
~Neil W, Manufacturer, Vanisle, Canada

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