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Renewables First celebrates a year of achievements in 2017

Renewables First celebrates a year of achievements in 2017

2017 was another productive year for Renewables First, as they played a key role in a number of high-profile hydropower schemes throughout the United Kingdom.

Our sister company, GoFlo Screens ( www.gofloscreens.co.uk ), has also gone from strength to strength, designing and installing its self-cleaning / travelling water intake screens for hydropower and utility sites throughout the UK. The screens are also attracting interest throughout Europe and as far afield as New Zealand.

Below is a brief overview of some of the projects in which Renewables First and GoFlo Screens has played a key role in 2017. It includes only those projects that have proceeded through to installation and commissioning. There are other projects in the pipeline and details about these projects will be posted in due course as they proceed to installation in 2018. The project summaries below also include links to our Project Blog Home page for those wanting more detail.

Crossflow turbine for prestigious restaurant and hotel near Bala, North Wales

Crossflow turbine at Pale Hall

Crossflow turbine at Pale Hall

Project Description: Refurbishment hydropower scheme, including a new 90 kW Crossflow turbine at Pale Hall, North Wales.

Renewables First Role: Licensing, Design, Installation and Commissioning.

Renewables First was hired to refurbish an existing hydropower scheme within the grounds of Pale Hall, located on the Afon Caletwr, near Bala, Gwynedd. The project involved modifying and adapting the existing infrastructure of a hydropower scheme that was originally installed back in the 1920’s. The existing Gilkes turbine was deemed to be beyond restoration, as well as poorly sized for the site characteristics, so a replacement 90 kW Crossflow turbine was installed. The hydro scheme is estimated to generate approximately 350,000 kWh electricity per year. This is equivalent to powering roughly 82 UK homes and creates an emissions saving of 179,000 Kg CO2 per year.

Crossflow hydro turbine and GoFlo self-cleaning screen at Penrhyn Estate, Snowdonia

Crossflow turbine at Cochwillan

Crossflow turbine at Cochwillan

Goflo travelling screen at Cochwillan

Goflo travelling screen at Cochwillan

Project Description: 90 kW Crossflow hydro turbine and GoFlo self-cleaning water intake screen at the Penrhyn Estate, Cochwillan.

Renewables First Role: Consultancy, Design, Installation and Commissioning.

GoFlo Screens Role: Consultancy, Design, Installation and Commissioning.

The Cochwillan hydropower scheme is an exemplar project demonstrating how innovative water screening technology can enhance the generating capacity of hydropower.

The scheme is located in North Wales on the Afon Ogwen on the Penrhyn Estate, Cochwillan. The installation comprises a 90 kW Crossflow hydro turbine, exploiting a net head of 8 m and a maximum flow rate of 1.59 m3/s. The water intake and GoFlo screen is located adjacent to an old weir and the hydro turbine is located on land within a natural meander of the river. The overall screen is a modular system consisting of two screens located directly next to each other. With each screen measuring 1.5 m in width by 4.5 m in length, the total screened area amounts to 13.5 m2.

The GoFlo automatic travelling screen ensures that the project complies with important environmental regulations. Furthermore, by ensuring greater continuity of flow and reduced screen maintenance time, both the energy yield and income generated by the turbine is increased. Combining hydropower technology with the GoFlo travelling screen is a win-win situation. The annual energy capture of the Cochwillan scheme is calculated to be 487 MWh, equivalent to powering 111 UK homes and producing an annual CO2 saving of 243,642 Kg. Without the GoFlo screen, the energy capture would be significantly less.

Replacement hydropower scheme at Errwood Reservoir, Derbyshire

Errwood Reservoir hydro site

Errwood Reservoir hydro site

Project Description: A “replacement scheme” – including installation of a 100 kW Francis turbine on water transfer pipelines between the Errwood and Fernilee Reservoirs in the Peak District National Park.

Renewables First Role: Feasibility, Design, Installation and Commissioning.

The Errwood hydropower scheme is a Replacement Project in which an aging and relatively inefficient 150 kW turbine (actually a pump working in reverse to generate electricity) installed back in the late 1980’s, was replaced with a much more efficient 100 kW Francis turbine. The turbine is located on water transfer pipelines within the embankment separating the Errwood and Fernilee Reservoirs.

The hydro turbine exploits the small altitude difference between the two reservoirs and captures the kinetic energy of water flowing from Errwood Reservoir down to the lower-level Fernilee Reservoir. The scheme makes complete use of the existing dam infrastructure, which is operated by United Utilities Water Business, whose role is to transfer water to and from the reservoirs as part of a water treatment and supply process.

The Errwood hydropower scheme is estimated to generate 381,028 kWh per year, typically enough to power 87 UK homes. This equates to an emissions saving of 190,514 tonnes CO2e per year.

100 KW Turgo turbine for the Brondanw Estate, Snowdonia

Turgo turbine at Brondanw Estate, Snowdonia

Turgo turbine at Brondanw Estate, Snowdonia

Project Description: High head hydro scheme, incorporating a 100 KW Turgo turbine and Coanda screen, located on the Brondanw Estate in the Snowdonia National Park.

Renewables First Role: Feasibility, Design and Consenting, Installation and Commissioning.

The Brondanw Estate is owned by the Clough Williams Ellis Foundation. Located on upland terrain, the hydropower scheme features a 100 kW Turgo hydro turbine, located on the Afon Maesgwm. The scheme is a high head set up, with a vertical drop of 128 m between the water intake and the turbine house. The water intake utilises a Coanda screen, connected to an 850 m long pipeline, which traverses fields, streams and tracks before delivering water to the turbine.

The hydropower scheme will produce 486,669 kWh of electricity per year, equivalent to powering 111 UK homes and an emissions saving of 243,335 kg CO2e/year.

Hydropower installation at Lady’s Dingle, Snowdonia National Park

Turbine house at lady’s Dingle, Snowdonia

Turbine house at lady’s Dingle, Snowdonia

Project Description: 45 KW Turgo hydro turbine and Coanda screen, located in the Snowdonia National Park.

Renewables First Role: Design, Installation and Commissioning.

The scheme comprises a 45 kW Turgo turbine, utilising a 50 m head and a flow rate of 156 l/s. The intake weir makes use of a natural bedrock step in the watercourse, which helped to reduce construction costs. The water intake incorporates a Coanda screen as well as an eel pass. A 400 mm diameter HPPE pipeline conveys water from the abstraction point to the new turbine. The pipeline route passes under grazing fields for approximately 550 m to the final discharge point on the Afon Gwrysgog. Given that it is located within the National Park, the scheme has been designed to blend in with the landscape and local vernacular. Commissioned in March 2017, the 100 kW Turgo turbine is calculated to generate 486,669 kWh of electricity per year. This is equivalent to powering 111 UK homes and leads to an emissions saving of 243,335 kg CO2e/year.

Allt Coire a Bhainidh Crossflow turbine, Scottish Highlands

Hydro site Allt Coire a Bhainidh, Scotland

Hydro site Allt Coire a Bhainidh, Scotland

Project Description: 100 KW Crossflow turbine with Coanda water intake screen, located on Scottish Forestry Commission owned land.

Renewables First Role: Feasibility, Design and Consenting, Installation and Commissioning.

Construction works for this scheme began during the closing weeks of 2017. A Coanda water intake screen, located on the Allt Coire a Bhainidh, will mark the upper boundary of the hydro scheme. From this point, water will enter a 1.4 km buried pipeline navigating a topographical drop in height of 65 m and finally connecting to a 100 kW Crossflow turbine, located in the turbine house. Once complete, it is calculated that the annual energy capture of the hydro scheme will be 457,000 kWh, equivalent to powering roughly 104 Scottish homes, with a CO2 emissions saving of 229 tonnes per year.

Hydropower scheme on Scottish Forestry Commission site at Allt na Fearna

Constructing the turbine house at Allt na Fearna, Scotland

Constructing the turbine house at Allt na Fearna, Scotland

Project Description: 100 KW Turgo hydro turbine and Coanda screen, located on Scottish Forestry Commission site.

Renewables First Role: Feasibility, Design and Consenting, Installation and Commissioning.

Construction works for this scheme began in the autumn of 2017. Once the hydropower scheme is up and running, roughly 115 l/s of water will be delivered to a 100 kW Turgo turbine via a 780 m long penstock, descending a gross head of 143 vertical m. The installed turbine will be a 100 kW Turgo turbine supplied by Hydrolite. The estimated annual generation of the turbine will be 412,000 kWh. This is equivalent to powering 107 Scottish homes and will displace 144,842 Kg of CO2/year.

GoFlo travelling screen for Cornish hydropower site

GoFlo self-cleaning screen at Kenningstock Mill, Cornwall

GoFlo self-cleaning screen at Kenningstock Mill, Cornwall

Project Description: GoFlo self-cleaning water intake screen, installed at an existing hydropower scheme, installed by Renewables First.

GoFlo Screens Role: Feasibility, Design and Consenting, Installation and Commissioning.

The Kenningstock Mill hydropower scheme is located at Camelford in Cornwall. The hydropower component of the scheme comprises a 25 kW Crossflow turbine, with an annual generation of 107,454 kWh per year, enough to power the equivalent of 25 UK homes and displacing 53,727 kg/CO2 per year.

The self-cleaning travelling screen was manufactured and installed by Gloucestershire based, GoFlo Screens Ltd. The installation comprises one screen unit with a width of 0.9 m and a length of 4.1 m and is equipped with a fine mesh in order to comply with fish and eel screening regulations.

The screen is designed to accommodate a maximum flow rate of 0.6 m3/s and was designed to be retrofitted into the recently installed 25 kW hydro scheme, installed by Renewables First. Prior to the installation of the GoFlo screen, water was abstracted via a drum screen into a penstock forebay header tank which fed a 24 ” penstock, approximately 30 m in length. The newly installed travelling screen will reduce screen maintenance and turbine downtime at a site which is plagued by waterborne leaf litter. This will in turn increase generating capacity and income form the hydro scheme.

Goflo travelling screen for new Templeborough Biomass Power Plant

GoFlo screen at Templeborough – as seen from above

GoFlo screen at Templeborough – as seen from above

Project Description: Installation of GoFlo self-cleaning screen to screen water for the cooling system of newly constructed Templeborough Biomass Power Plant, South Yorkshire.

GoFlo Screens Role: Feasibility, Design and Installation.

Although construction works for this scheme began in 2017, commissioning of the screen system is likely to happen in early spring of 2018. GoFlo Screens Ltd (sister Company of Renewables First) was hired to design and install a self-cleaning water intake screen for the brand new Templeborough Biomass Power Plant, currently under construction in South Yorkshire.

The 41 MW biomass plant will supply the equivalent of approximately 78,000 homes with green electricity, saving roughly 150,000 tonnes CO2 per year.

The GoFlo installation will comprise a single self-cleaning travelling screen, located at the water intake for the cooling towers. Water will be screened prior to feeding high-powered pumps that will pump water to the biomass plant’s cooling towers.

This is the first time that a GoFlo travelling screen has been installed for use at a power station, but this reflects its design potential as a product that can be utilised across a wide range of industrial, agricultural and energy sector applications.

The self-cleaning screen at the Templeborough Biomass Power Plant measures 1 min width by 3.9 m in length and it will be positioned at a relatively steep angle of 60 degrees. The screen will work continuously, as the cooling towers will require a constant supply of cooling water. The screen specification is standard and includes the full remote control and monitoring facilities. The screen motor is an IP67 specification and is therefore designed to operate when fully submerged in the unlikely event of a flood.

As we move into 2018 new projects will enter the construction phase. For more information about any of the projects mentioned above or other projects undertaken in previous years, visit our Latest Projects pages.

Are you considering a low carbon renewable energy project?

Renewables First have considerable experience and full project capability, from initial feasibility studies through to system design and installation for wind and hydro power systems.

Read more about renewable energy in our Hydro Learning Centre and Wind Learning Centre. Alternatively, take the Wind Site Self Assessment or contact us about a hydropower feasibility study today.