Water fall eletricty

Discussion in 'Energy & Electricity' started by catsraven, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. catsraven

    catsraven Meoww

    643
    11
    Ok Iv been tossing this idea around in my head. What if you could build a water fall and a water wheel to make all of your electricity? Would it be feasible? How would you make it work? You would have to be able to re circulate the water I know but how would it be accomplished?
     
  2. longtime

    longtime Well-Known Member

    155
    0
    Sure it's possible if you have a natural head for you turbine/water wheel.

    But if you want to recirculate then it's a storage device or a perpetual motion machine. Batteries are easier and the other does not work.
     

  3. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    684
    1
    Do a search for 'Micro-Hydro',

    Turbine type generators are MUCH more efficient and MUCH more trouble free than a 'Water Wheel'...

    You will need about 5' of 'Fall' or 'Head' in your system to make it feasible on a reasonable scale, but there are a BUNCH of Micro-Hydro systems out there and they plug right along, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and they are VERY useful if you have enough flow and fall to get the job done.
     
  4. catsraven

    catsraven Meoww

    643
    11
    Ok Im not getting it. What do you mean?
     
  5. longtime

    longtime Well-Known Member

    155
    0
    If you have enough vertical drop (only a couple feet is needed, but more is always better)you can buy or make a device to convert the falling water to mechnanical energy. Micro turbine as Jeephammer said or a water wheel for very simple.

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcycDAJc858]YouTube - Micro hydro[/ame]

    If you have to pump it back up to a reservoir to run the turbine/water wheel it will take more energy than it makes, use batteries for storage.

    Perpetual motion - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
  6. Tirediron

    Tirediron RockyMountainCanadian

    4,288
    88
    Waterwheels make torque at low speed , generating power requires higher speeds so a turbine system with adiquate head (height of water above the turbine is more effiecient . Unless you have a huge volume of water at a lower head and use a very large water wheel and overdrive it to run a gen. again Google will provide a lot of info .
     
  7. Tex

    Tex Pincushion

    278
    1
    Longtime is telling you that you cannot "recirculate" water. The energy used to pump it up to reuse it is greater than the energy you can get from it.

    Jeephammer was telling you what you need. Power from water is calculated from the amount of water flowing times the distance it falls. Generating from falling water takes the energy from falling water and converts it to electricity. The falling water spins a wheel or impellor to generate electricity.

    A site with good consistant running water and a few feet of "head" is a rare thing. If you have it, it's a gold mine.
     
  8. longtime

    longtime Well-Known Member

    155
    0
    Thank You,
    My wife always says I speak a different language.
     
  9. catsraven

    catsraven Meoww

    643
    11
    Ok I can put that idea to rest. Thanks all for your input :)
     
  10. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    684
    1
    I've set up a couple of micro-hydro systems, small scale since we don't have enough 'Fall' or 'Head' to make much power, but they put out 24/7/365 and that power adds up pretty quickly if you have flowing water.

    In Central America, I saw floats made of barrels, a paddle wheel between them and the natives making power from that.
    Here you couldn't block the river like that, but there aren't any laws down there,
    And it didn't make much power, but it recharged vehicle batteries the folks used to light homes at night, and it recharged stuff like cell phones, ect.

    Didn't get a good look at what they were using for a generator, but it would charge 4 or 5 vehicle batteries a day, so I'm guessing the output was in 12 volts and pretty good output to do that many deep cycle batteries in a day.

    Falling water, I mean VERTICAL DROP, will give you MUCH more energy output because of weight/inertia when it hits the impeller at the bottom than the weight of a water wheel.

    As for the 'Back Up' water generators being sold,
    STAY AWAY FROM THEM!
    They hook up to your water line, and the city water powers up a few hundred watts,
    Usually not enough to even run the refrigerator,
    And the water consumption to generate that wattage will cost you a FORTUNE when the water bill comes in!

    I don't have running water on my place, so I'm screwed for micro hydro,
    But if you have running water with fall, you have a gold mine as far as energy production is concerned!