How Does a Run-of-River Plant Work?
A run-of-river plant utilises the natural decline of a flowing body of water and the speed of the current. The water is also accumulated in order to increase the difference in altitude between upstream water and downstream water (see animation), mostly six to 15 metres. The water thus "precipitates" into the abyss and is targeted towards a turbine, which then activates a generator, which, in turn, generates electricity.
What advantages come with electricity generation from run-of-river plants?
The capacity of our run-of-river plants ranges from but few kilowatts in small scale hydropower plants to more than 300 megawatts in the large Danube power plants. It depends on the number and the make of the turbines and indicates the speed at which electricity is generated. The quantity of electricity, on the other hand, is the task of the power plants and depends largely on the water level of the river. The more water flows through the turbines, the higher the quantity of energy generated.
If you change the flow quantity in our model, you will see the effect on electricity generation. If the levels rise above a certain threshold value, for instance, due to flooding, electricity generation begins to decrease. At a certain point, the drop height is too low to drive the turbines and the power plant has to be turned off.
Plant Safety and Floods
Our task is to ensure the safety of the retaining walls and the proper operation of the power plants in the event of a flood.