Chapter 8

Hydropower

Abstract

Hydropower is one of the oldest sources of mechanical power and the largest source of renewable electricity generation in use. Global capacity is around 1000 GW. Hydropower is site specific and so each project will be unique. Hydropower plants are classified according to their size into micro-, mini-, small, and large hydropower. In terms of generating the capacity the large plants are the most important. These can be either dam and reservoir plants or run-of-river schemes. The latter are the easiest to construct and least disruptive, but the former stores energy and is therefore much more flexible in the way it can be used. Energy is taken from hydropower plants through turbines and a number of designs such as ...

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