Anyone recommend a good microhydro turbine forum?

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,834
Northern NH
My wood lot/possible future home site has a couple of options for microhydro. Definitely not big flows but the elevation is there and a consistent flow. It would be seasonal as digging a trench to keep the line from freezing up is not going to happen. Ideally I would just grid tie it but expect its going to have stay off the grid and charge batteries given the size and utility regs. Looks like I can run a small Pelton wheel with multiple nozzles to match the flows. I have my old Home Power back issues but wondering if there is any new technology that may have popped up for charge controllers and turbines. Lots of of Chinese junk out there.

Odds are I will put in a headworks and run pipe for other purposes and then get a good idea on seasonal flow. I have an easy 50 foot of head option and a much harder 250 foot option but expect unless i find a great deal on pipe the 250 foot option will just cost too much for the pipe.
 
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ABMax24

Minister of Fire
I haven't yet found a decent forum for micro-hydro power. Granted I've just been looking out of interest as finding a suitable location and getting all the permits, environmental permissions, etc. is just about impossible around here.

That being said I have watched the series on Youtube by MrHydrohead, it has been pretty informative but his system is different than I think I would try for. He has a very reliable water source and as such runs a synchronous AC generator and dump loads to help control frequency. The cool thing is he makes enough electricity to heat his home with it as well.

This video gives a reasonable overview of his system, but there are another 20 parts that go into further detail.


This shows some of his power output, something like 100kwh per day.

 

semipro

Minister of Fire
Jan 12, 2009
3,941
SW Virginia
I think I'd give my right foot (it's hurting right now anyway) for a piece of property with hydropower potential.
I was going to suggest the Homepower archives. As mentioned, Youtube is another source. I recall one guy that used a motor from a Fisher and Paykel clothes washer along with a Pelton turbine (IIRC).
Most of the innovation I've noticed in this area lately has been with in-stream generators - something you would submerge in flowing water. I have a professional interest in those.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,834
Northern NH
The trade off is my access is from the bottom of the property and I have a steep slope on the lower half. Good for hydro not so good for access. At best I am looking at a 200 watt generator and only warm season use as the terrain is very rocky glacial till so no real option to bury it.