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Hydroelectric Power Generation System Design Recommendation

11/22/2016 11:44 AM

I have a flowing well that runs through a 5" pipe at a rate exceeding 250 gallons per minute. The well driller calls it a "gusher".

I am keen for any ideas on power generation systems and / or groups who could help me design and install a system.

I live in Michigan and I believe the system would generate excess electricity beyond my needs to power a small house and two garages. I am told the local electric company would buy-back the excess.

Any thoughts on an approach to this situation are much appreciated!

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#1

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/22/2016 12:33 PM

Firstly, you need to cap the well with a well head, and ascertain the pressure the well develops. How then does the pressure behave as flow is drawn (allowed) out through a California pipe (to estimate flow rate)?

If you can develop a working curve for your artesian well, then calculations about Pressure-Volume work (or pressure-flow power) should be straight forward.

If the head is somewhat low, and you do not need constant flow draw, consider an elevated reservoir so that reserve power can be set up. Do not expect more than 80% system efficiency, and many times in hydroelectric power (especially pumped hydro) 72% seems to be about the limit.

Base your power draw on the peak power demand you have, balanced against the ability to store up reserve energy to meet that power draw for however long that demand exists, and you will know more.

Example, if you need 2 kWh electric energy to be drawn at 2 kW, the system must hold up that reserve in water capacity so that it can deliver 140% of that power as water pressure-flow power for 1 hour, and beyond that, can still meet nominal average demand at average flow.

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#8
In reply to #1

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 7:16 AM

Thanks, James.

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#2

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/22/2016 1:07 PM

The power to be obtained from any liquid system is the change in pressure multiplied by the volumetric flowrate multiplied by the system efficiency. Until a change in pressure is available, it is not possible to estimate the value of the power drawn.

Example calculation:

  • Flow: 250usgal/min = 0.016m3/sec, assumed continuous
  • Pressure: say 10ft head change = 31000N, assumed continuous
  • System efficiency =say 50%
  • Power available =250W, or 6kWh/day
  • @ say, £0.12GBP per kWh sold
  • Income = £260GBP per year
  • Assume acceptable ROCE of 25%
  • Maximum justifiable investment = around £1000GBP.
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#7
In reply to #2

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 3:17 AM

Correction: <...31000N...> should read 31000Nm-2.

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#9
In reply to #2

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 7:18 AM

These calculations are very helpful. Thanks PWSlack

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#3

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/22/2016 2:32 PM

I would have the water tested, maybe better for bottling and selling....Michigan needs water....

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#10
In reply to #3

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 7:22 AM

We tested the water and it is potable. We've been using it as our primary water source for drinking, bathing, etc. Unfortunately my friend's father owns a water bottling company in Michigan and they claim it to be a tough business as they compete against Coke, Pepsi and Nestle. Those three seem to own the vast majority of market share. Thanks SolarEagle

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#14
In reply to #3

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 9:06 AM

Why not get the power out of the water first, and use that to drive the packaging line?

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#4

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/22/2016 2:38 PM

What are you going to do with the water after you've used it to generate power?

How long is it going to last?

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#11
In reply to #4

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 7:24 AM

The water forms a small creek (brook trout inhabit portions of it) immediately after it discharges. I intend to keep it that way for environmental reasons. Thanks Randall

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#5

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/22/2016 4:26 PM

Have you heard of a Pelton Wheel Generator?

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#12
In reply to #5

Re: Hydroelectric power generation system design recommendation

11/23/2016 7:27 AM

No, I haven't. I will check it out. Thanks Original_Macgyver

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#6

Re: Hydroelectric Power Generation System Design Recommendation

11/22/2016 6:10 PM
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#13
In reply to #6

Re: Hydroelectric Power Generation System Design Recommendation

11/23/2016 7:30 AM

Thank you for sharing these links, Lyn. This is very helpful!

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Users who posted comments:

James Stewart (2); lyn (1); Original_Macgyver (1); philfloridabuckeye (6); PWSlack (2); Randall (1); SolarEagle (1)

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