Hydropower

Ten Things That You Didn’t know About Hydropower

The hydropower or water power is the powers that is obtained from falling water or fast running water and convert them to use it for other purposes.

We all know that hydropower is not very common. Hence there is a lot about it that most of us have no idea about. In this article, we shall see some interesting facts about hydropower.

The oldest source of power

The hydropower is one of the oldest methods of generating power in the earth. It is said that farmers in Greece used the force of the water to grind the grains. Even in some old literary works, there are a lot of instances where the concept of hydropower has been mentioned.

Size does not matter

When we think of hydropower, the only thing that comes to our minds is huge dams and turbines to harness the hydropower. Basically, we associate hydropower with huge facilities. But on the contrary, the hydropower plants can be of small size. All you need to a considerable amount of force from the falling water. Hence municipal water facilities and irrigation ditches can also be used for this purpose.

Niagara Falls- The first hydropower plant

 

Niagara Falls

The Niagara Falls was the first to have a hydroelectric generation facility. It was built in the year 1881 by Charles Brush who connected a generator to a turbine and produced electricity.

The Washington – Electricity

Even though most of the states in the county use hydropower up to a certain level, nothing can come on par with the amount of hydropower used by Washington. It is said that nearly seventy percent of the power to the state comes through hydropower. There are eleven other states that use more than ten percent.

Low cost

When comparing to other energy sources hydropower is very cheap. The states like Oregon and Washington which gets electricity majorly from hydropower have low energy bill when compared to the rest of the country.

The percentage

Of the entire power generated in the country, hydropower contributes nearly seven percent to it. In the last decade, there has been an increase in the percentage from five to seven.

The fluctuations

When it comes to hydropower plants, there might be few instances when the power production from zero can go to its maximum and vice versa.  This is mainly because of the difference in the flow of water. If there is a full force, then the power production will be at its optimum level. If not the energy produced varies according to the force of the flow of water.

Pumped Storage

The pumped storage is the concept of generating power by pumping the water to a reservoir at a higher altitude and using the force to operate the turbine that it offers while it falls. In this method, the electricity that is generated is stored in batteries and used later.

Other favors

The setup at the dams to produce energy can help the fishes and other wildlife in a lot of ways. The can help them move freely around the dams. Fish ladders and fish elevators are some of the techniques that can be used.

Not used up to optimum levels

The main purpose of the dams is to serve as water reservoirs and produce energy. But only three percent of the dams are being used to generate electricity. These dams if used more amount of electricity can be generated.