For a major water supplier in England, Riventa has been monitoring a hydro turbine to see if its maximum possible electrical output was being maintained.
At a key site, river water is pumped to a break tank at the top of a hill, from where it can either overflow or run down the hill to a large reservoir below — or be directed to a hydro turbine with the same outfall. Riventa was tasked with monitoring the efficiency of the turbine in question – a fixed-speed machine (1016 rpm) that operates without any human intervention. Using inlet guide vanes, its load is controlled via flow rate modulation.
Riventa’s FREEFLOW hardware and software system was installed to show immediately whether a proposed change was effective or not. The system also tracked any savings associated with a change and the financial consequences of it.
Originally rated with a best efficiency of 84%, the maximum detected was 82%. However, the turbine was found to spend less than 10% of its time above 80%.
“This is a good example of how we can help identify opportunities to maximize output from a hydro application – with the same technology that we bring to pump and blower installations to help improve efficiencies, create energy savings and prolong the lifetime of assets,” said Steve Barrett, managing director for Riventa.
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