Voith Hydro Displays Its Leadership in Environmentally-Friendly Hydropower Solutions
SACRAMENTO, Calif., July 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Voith Hydro’s leadership in technically-advanced hydropower solutions was on display this week at HydroVision, the premier North American hydropower conference being held in Sacramento. Highlighted at the conference were Voith’s Minimum Gap Runner (MGR) technology, the fish-friendly Alden turbine for small hydro power facilities, and aerating turbine technology that allows for improved dissolved oxygen content downstream from hydropower facilities.
“Voith is proud to focus our state of the art technology on environmentally-friendly solutions that improve the safety, efficiency, and output at existing dams and hydropower facilities,” Voith Hydro CEO and President Kevin Frank said. “Though hydropower is one of the world’s oldest forms of energy production, our technology helps it remain one of the most advanced. As our display at HydroVision clearly demonstrated, Voith Hydro is leading the efforts to promote environmentally-friendly solutions that will provide clean, safe, abundant, and efficient power generation across the United States and around the world.”
The new and improved technologies used by Voith Hydro will help improve the power output and environmentally-friendly characteristics at many existing hydroelectric facilities, and could bring online some of the nearly 80,000 dams in the U.S. that currently do not generate electricity – and do so without the need to build new dams.
TECHNOLOGIES OFFERED BY VOITH INCLUDE:
- Minimum Gap Runner (MGR) technology. The new MGR blade is designed to reduce turbine gap flows, which can harm fish both through rapid pressure changes and the tendency for fish to get caught in the blades. In addition to successful implementation at Wanapum Dam on the Columbia River where fish survival reached 96%, MGR technology has actually resulted in an increase in turbine output as well as efficiency.
- Alden Turbine. Developed by Alden Research Laboratories and refined and model-tested at Voith’s York, PA facility, the Alden Turbine is a 3-blade Francis type turbine with a slower rotational speed compared to more conventional Francis turbines, thus increasing fish survival rates. The new design vastly reduces rapid pressure changes that are one of the leading causes of fish mortality. Full-scale fish survival rates for direct Alden Turbine passage are expected to range between 98% – 100% (varies by species). The Alden Turbine is ideal for hydropower facilities unable to utilize the full benefits of MGR technology’s fish-friendly characteristics.
- Aerating Turbine Technology. Voith Hydro specializes in auto-venting turbines (AVT), which improve the content of dissolved oxygen in water downstream from a hydropower facility. A deficiency in dissolved oxygen can cause major downstream ecosystem problems, endangering fish and wildlife populations. Proprietary Voith designs allow for maximum dissolved oxygen uptake without compromising the output or efficiency the way traditional aeration systems have in the past.
By employing these environmentally-friendly technologies at existing powered and non-powered dams, nearly all of the remaining environmental concerns about hydropower are removed from the equation, creating new power generation from the nation’s most reliable, affordable and sustainable energy resource.
About Voith Hydro – Voith Hydro is a Group Division of Voith and – with a current workforce of almost 5,200 employees and a sales volume of almost 1.2 billion Euros in the business year 2009/2010 – belongs to the world-wide leading companies for hydro power equipment. Voith Hydro North America is headquartered in York, PA and employees over 500 people, including 126 new jobs over the last three years.
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SOURCE Voith Hydro