Feasibility Study

1. Data Collection - Hydrology Data A minimum of one year daily flow data and mean of annual rainfall is required to make a preliminary estimation or the flow of the river can be measured using current meter. - Topographic Data Contour information or aerial photographic maps with reasonable accuracy (1:1.000 or less) should be obtained for determining levels and distances in estimating the length of penstock, transmission line and possible project head, etc. - Geological Data A ground conditions, landslides, regional seismic activity and river sedimentation should be obtained to assess the potential location and project layout. 2. Estimation of Potential Energy The amount of energy generated by a hydropower depends on the head drop and flow rates available from the river. For a rough estimation of potential energy: P = 9.8 x Q x H x P Q H = Capacity (KW) = Debit (m3/s) = Head (m) = Efficiency of Equipments (Normally 80%)

3. Site Inspection A site inspection should be carried out by engineers for familiarization of the environment and identification of any major barriers to the implementation of the project. An evaluation of the following should be made while visiting site: - Confirmation flow of water. - Confirmation topographic data. - Existing infrastructure and condition, including operational considerations. - Potential intake, waterway, forebay, penstock and powerhouse location. - Potential transmission line. - Potential access road routes and suitable construction and equipments installation. - The social and environment impact and benefits on the local area. - Land ownership and/or the prospect of land acquisition. It is best not to leave the site before analyzing the results, because any mistakes will be easier to check on-site. 4. Hydropower Assessment Since the flow and head data has been confirmed, the potential annual energy can be properly assessed. Turbine and generator will need to be carefully selected and sized based upon the suitability of the flow and head range. Optimization of the operating range of the turbine will need to be made, including the capacity

5. . .Financing strategy.Cash flow analysis. tailrace channel. However.Cost of hydro-mechanical and electro-mechanical equipments. generator and control system). substructure arrangement. .Network connection design to allow assessment of the power distribution. building footprint. Cost Estimation It should be at accuracy in the order of ± 10%. . .factor. . .Engineering and project management costs (10 to 15% of total cost). .Generating equipments (turbine. waterway. .Civil works (intake and weir.Revenue assessment. The value of energy based upon demand capability. but of simple arrangement with appropriate risk mitigation and containment in place. site access and construction details). forebay. The capacity factor for most small hydropower would normally be around 70% in order to provide a satisfactory return on investment. Criterions that must be considered by the investor before taking decision are: .Cost of civil works.Contingency (15 to 20% of total cost). Financial Analysis A financial analysis will allow the economic viability of the project to be assessed. 8.Unit cost of energy. .Environmentally and socially sound and sustainable. and pipework alignment. penstock. Prominent aspect of the works can be categorized into: . Preliminary Design Preliminary drawings of the plant and bill of quantities should be made before estimating the cost of the project.Cost effective/cheap. .The scheme would need to be technically feasible.Base cost estimate. . The analysis must consider the following parameters as part of its economic modeling: . Key capital cost items can be subdivided into: . .Easy to implement. powerhouse.Land acquisition. . such as the floor levels. . Implementation The feasibility study allows a detailed assessment of the technical and commercial viability of scheme to be made. . The electrical and mechanical components determine the physical arrangement of powerhouse. .Sensitivity and risk analysis. the decision whether to implement the scheme will be up to the investor. Appropriate consideration of risks and management of risk is very important considering the plant may be embedded with local communities and ecology. including seasonal variation and peak/off-peak pricing. roof clearance. 7.Cost of grid connection. . 6.Economic life (usually 25 to 50 years used).Net present value and internal rate of return.

Note: Assessing the available water resource (Q) and head (H) is key part to predict the potential energy produced and cost estimation relies on its accuracy. Data Collection: Hydrology Data Topographic Data Geological Data F E A S Estimation of Potential Energy I B I Site Inspection L I Hydropower Assessment T Y Preliminary Design S T U Cost Estimation D Y Financial Analysis Implementation .

General Layout of Small Hydropower .

so it is important to measure flow at various times of the year Design Concepts Weirs y The weirs must be stable for all possible loading conditions. For economic reason. including transient surge pressure that will occur. accessibility. The horizontal forces divided by all vertical forces must remain between 0.Measure Flow Rate y Stream levels will change through the seasons. The flow velocity in the penstock may vary. the ratio of vertical length to horizontal length is at 1:5. then there is risk of a burst. y y The pressure of the water in the penstock depends on the head. The intake shall be designed to produce relatively uniform flow and free of air entertaining vortices. Internal Diameter depends on the length. The intake should be equipped with a trashrack to minimize the amount of debris and sediment carried by the incoming water. . If the pressure rating is too high then money has been wasted. the pipe diameter and the operating pressure. Moreover. flow velocity passing through the trashrack shall not exceed 1 m/s at the minimum operation level with clear screen. The flow of water in the canal must not be so fast that the walls are eroded or that excessive head is lost. and not so slow that silt settlement will clog the canal Design Concepts .5 .3 m/s. joint system and cost. it can be convenient to use of uniform diameter but with different thickness as a function of hydrostatic pressures. To prevent clogging of trash rack against trash. The ideal penstock will be low pressure at the intake and thicker at the nozzle where pressure is greatest. The wall thickness required depends on the pipe material.Penstock y y y The material is selected according to the ground conditions. its ultimate tensile strength. The wall thickness is selected to resist the maximum internal hydraulic pressure. such as: o Hydrostatic forces on the upstream and downstream o Hydrostatic uplift acting under the base of the weirs o Forces due to silt deposit in the reservoir and in contact with the weirs o Earthquake forces The weirs should resist for potential overturning. weight. The diameter is selected to reduce frictional losses within the penstock to an acceptable level.6 and 0. y y y Design Concepts Intake y y y y The location of intake should be chosen in relatively straight section of the river. head and flow rate. Design Concepts Waterway y y The dimension and velocity of water flow through the waterway are obtained by the Manning s equation. sliding and bearing capacity. Spillways should be designed to avoid damage due to the excess water.75. If pipe with pressure rating which is too low is used. from 2.

The minimum water level should be placed 2 x penstock diameter from the invert y Design Concepts Turbine y y The choice of turbine depends mainly on the head and the design flow for the proposed small hydropower. Inadequate submergence may result in the development of vortices which tend to reduce the discharge of the penstock and the efficiency of the turbine. The selection of turbine also depends on the desired running speed of the generator.Design Concepts Forebay y The depth in front of the penstock should be deep enough to avoid water vortices. .

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful