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Looking for info on a few different micro hydro setups

 
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Hello everyone! I'm trying to get back to focusing on getting some sort of micro hydro system installed on my property. I think i have a unique situation where a few different systems may work and im not sure what one to go with. I have two streams on my property that meet each other. One stream (stream A) drops about 40 ft within 15ft and then levels off. The second stream (stream B) come out of a 10 inch pipe and drops about 6 ft before leveling off and meeting stream A.  
Both streams fill a 5gal bucket in less than 2 seconds. I havent tested the streams where they meet and form stream C.  

Here is my issue.  Stream A drops quickly and seems like it would be good for one of those small systems that uses the drop to force water down pipe to form pressure. Im not sure what you would call it. Stream B seems like it would be good for an overshot water wheel, having all that water running out of a pipe 6ft above ground level. But stream c, having both creeks run into it doesnt have the head for an overshot but it has the water of both creeks so maybe an undershot wheel? What do you think would be the most efficient method?
 
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For the majority of microhydro generators, more head is generally better than more flow (typically better efficiency).

Intercept stream A as high as you can and run it through pipes to a microhydro generator positioned as low as possible.
 
Paul Delaet
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Peter VanDerWal wrote:For the majority of microhydro generators, more head is generally better than more flow (typically better efficiency).

Intercept stream A as high as you can and run it through pipes to a microhydro generator positioned as low as possible.



That's what i was leaning towards. Utilize the head to produce pressue and bottle neck it down to a nozzle. If i wanted to source a generator or the like, what would be the best way to go about it? A pma? Dynamo? Etc? I have a small dc motor i can get 9v out of with just turning it with a drill (maybe 150rpm). Id prefer to reuse something rather than have to spend money on something off eBay or another site, even if it does cost me a small percentage of efficency. I can apways upgrade later when funds allow dropping $200+ on a purposely built unit.
 
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Location: N. Idaho
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For small (battery centered) systems Google "Harris Hydro"
If you have adequate year round flow Google "micro hydro" for larger units.
For the standard profligate American family 25 /30 kw (roughly 100 amps) will run everything (perhaps not concurrently,.... but probably with one or two people)......including ovens, water heaters, furnaces, etc.
If your extraordinarily wastefull, (3000 sq ft house, 5+ people, metal fabrication shop...), than run a load calculation on your ideal home and buy accordingly. (A 400 amp service at 240v has a potential 96kw)
 
Red Smith
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Location: N. Idaho
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An overshot wheel is a system that uses dead weight as a motive force, while the overall velocity and volume are important the work is accomplished by little more than weight.
An undershot wheel uses velocity and surface area as its motive force.
A Pelton turbine uses velocity and pressure to move, its tailored to a specific load at a specific pressure.

For heavy work as a prime mover nothing beats an overshot wheel if you have adequate flow,
Generators need to be geared to make up for the low rotational speed or manufactured to low speed standards, but an overshot will act as prime mover for sawmills, gristmills, lathes, or any other heavy application.
An overshot wheel can be built by any competent wood worker or fabbed from aluminum or sheet steel. The taller the wheel the more torque, the larger the bucket the more torque depending on the streams ability to fill it.

Undershots are a desperate compromise when there is inadequate fall of the land. Still beats paying for power!,
Once again the taller the wheel the more torque, and the larger the surface area of the sails the more torque.

Pelton Turbines are a highly engineered solution, just enough for the required load, wonderfull machines but near impossible to repair with low tech / 3rd world resources, best options are nut and bolt replacements, and buy spare parts when your wealthy cause they will wear out.
Peltons are easy! Write what you want on the back of a large enough check and some clever guy will deliver it to your door!

Finaly there is a "vortex" system that drops high volumes of water over a very short distance, there are lots of homemade efforts but for reasonable efficiencies they are once again an engineered solution.
 
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