A Summary of Environmentally Friendly Turbine Design Concepts
design, design criteria, dissolved oxygen, fish mortality, Francis turbine, hydroelectric, Hydropower, injuries, Kaplan turbine, mortality, turbines, wicket gate
The Advanced Hydropower Turbine System Program (AHTS) was created in 1994 by the U.S. Department of Energy, Electric Power Research Institute, and the Hydropower Research Foundation. The Program's main goal is to develop 'environmentally friendly' hydropower turbines. The Program's first accomplishment was the development of conceptual designs of new environmentally friendly turbines. In order to do so, two contractors were competitively selected. The ARL/NREC team of engineers and biologists provided a conceptual design for a new turbine runner. The new runner has the potential to generate hydroelectricity at close to 90% efficiency. The Voith team produced new fish-friendly design criteria for Kaplan and Francis turbines that can be incorporated in units during rehabilitation projects or in new hydroelectric facilities. These include the use of advanced plant operation, minimum gap runners, placement of wicket gates behind stay vanes, among others. The Voith team will also provide design criteria on aerating Francis turbines to increase dissolved oxygen content. Detailed reviews of the available literature on fish mortality studies, causation of injuries to fish, and available biological design criteria that would assist in the design of fish-friendly turbines were performed. This review identified a need for more biological studies in order to develop performance criteria to assist turbine manufacturers in designing a more fish-friendly turbine.