Small Scale Hydro-Electric Power System
1 Project Overview
This project is to design and build a small scale hydro-electric power system at a local farm that is interested in a renewable, green energy source. This system will be powered by an existing man made pond, fed by a local spring, and used as a reservoir which is elevated approximately 100 feet above the proposed generating site. The project team will perform an on-site evaluation to gather measurements and layout ideas, measure potential head pressure, measure and calculate a controlled flow rate, and calculate potential power which will ultimately determine turbine selection. The project team will perform a cost analysis for the farm that includes but is not limited to, piping, turbine, generator, electronics, and materials. Depending on the system design choice, the team will design and integrate the necessary components of a working hydroelectric power system. These components could include circuit protection, battery bank, charging circuit, power inverter, power regulator, power monitoring system, and a grid tie in unit. The turbine and generator will be purchased. The electronics will be designed and built by the team with the exception that a grid tie in system may require certain certified components which may need to be purchased. The overall goal of the project is to provide the farm with efficient, clean, and reliable power. The amount of power supplied is based on the available resources.
The head pressure coupled with a controlled flow rate could drive a turbine providing consistent and reliable power to the farm thereby augmenting the traditional grid based power supply. The reduction of power demands for a local business is becoming paramount in two main aspects: cost and social consciousness. The cost of ever increasing energy bills increases the overall cost of doing business and therefore, the cost of the finished product passed on to the consumer. Reducing these costs leads to a more competitive and successful business which can compete more effectively with foreign or distant markets where labor and/or materials are cheaper. The money saved due to energy supplementation can also be used to further upgrade the efficiency of the facilities including upgrades to the generating system, replacing antiquated and inefficient machinery and production means, or something as simple as lighting upgrades to a fluorescent lighting system. These upgrades make the farm more sustainable and efficient both in use of electricity and other energy sources; further reducing the cost of operations. A power monitoring system used to monitor the output of the generating system and the incoming power consumption can be used to implement smart technology to maximize off peak demand and minimize power used on peak demand pricing. This will dramatically reduce costs and further lower the price of operation and production.
The social responsibility of a local company or group to reduce the amount of environmental impact of their businesses is fast becoming a factor for a consumer in choosing products and services. A company that has a smaller carbon footprint or a lower direct environmental impact is looked upon as a preferred company to deal with in the marketplace. This system is using a local power source that takes advantage of an existing water drainage issue, this system lowers CO2 emissions caused by the energy that would otherwise be purchased, and controls the water drainage to a consistent manageable level thereby reducing any damage due to erosion or flooding that may occur. With the technology installed and operating at an optimal level, an example can be made for other local farms and businesses to follow promoting the expansion and acceptance of small scale power supplementing systems as a more mainstream and viable solution to their energy needs and social conscious. A journey is begun with but a single step and this is a step in the right direction toward sustainability, both for monetary reasons and because it is the right thing to do to preserve our environment now and for future generations.
# A grid tied power generation system.
# Provides approximately 500 Watts continuous AC Electrical Power.
# Included power monitoring system.
# Low maintenance power system.
# A system that applies electrical safety for circuit protection, personnel and equipment.
2 Needs Identification and Background Research
3 System Requirements and Desired Features
4 Design Solutions
5 Top Level Block Diagrams
5.1 Generating System
5.1.1 Turbine/Generator with new upgrade: Automatic Turbine isolation
5.1.2 Power Factor Correction Circuitry
5.1.3 Grid Tied Control Switch
5.1.4 Main Power Disconnect
5.2 Power Monitoring System
5.2.1 DC Power Supply
5.2.2 Current Sensing Circuits
5.2.3 Voltage Sensing Circuits
5.2.4 Current Display and Control
5.2.5 Voltage Display and Control
5.2.6 Frequency Sensor
5.2.7 Speed Sensor
5.2.8 Frequency Display and Control
5.2.9 Speed Sensor Display
5.2.10 Power Display