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Session A5- Downstream fish passage via fish friendly turbine

Downstream fish passage at hydroelectric projects is an important aspect to restore diadromous fish populations to river systems. Providing downstream passage at hydro facilities is a common FERC license condition and mandatory prescriptions can be implemented by federal agencies. Passage facilities such as bypasses, bar racks, louvers, and Eicher screens can be expensive to install and operate and bypass effectiveness can be poor if not designed properly. A new technology which has potential to improve downstream passage effectiveness, while increasing generating capacity is the Alden turbine, which was developed through the U.S Department of Energy’s (DOE) former Advance HydroTurbine Systems Program. The Alden turbine is designed to allow the safe passage of downstream migrating fish through an operating turbine rather than using non-generation spill over dams or through bypasses. The development of this turbine has included pilot-scale biological and engineering tests funded by the DOE and, more recently, EPRI-sponsored research to re-design the turbine to increase flow and power and to develop blade leading edge designs that reduce strike-related fish mortality. In 2009 and 2010, with funding from DOE and several industry partners, EPRI contracted Voith Hydro to complete the engineering design of the turbine components and conduct model tests in preparation for the first installation and wider scale commercialization. Survival predictions for full-scale applications are very high (98% or greater for fish up to 8 inches in length) and will be verified ·with the first field installation (expected by 2015). We present engineering and biological performance data, cost information, and potential applications where the Alden turbine can be used to safely pass fish downstream.