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What is a pico hydro unit?


A pico hydro unit generates hydroelectric energy. The amount of energy which is usually generated from a pico hydro is upto 1kW.

Pico Hydro (PH) is a simple technology which can be installed and run without any negative impact to the environment, and provides sufficient lighting and energy to a household. The components of the PH system comprise of a flowing water channel, pressure pipe (penstock), turbine, generator, electrical controller ,distribution cables and safety devices. Thus, the  technology, material, resources and skills are available locally. PH systems tap a small water resource, with minimum disturbance to its natural condition as it does not require water storage, massive diversion, or any permanent construction. Used water again released to the same water resource after passing through the turbine.

The typical system is presented in the diagram below. The penstock is the pipe that carries water under pressure to the turbine. The nozzle focuses the water flowing through the penstock to the turbine runner, allowing it to impart maximum kinetic energy into the turbine. The turbine-generator system converts kinetic energy of water in to mechanical energy first and then into electrical energy. The purpose of distribution line is to distribute the energy generated to the point of use(end users).

Tags: Pico Hydro

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