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Traveling around the Northwest looking for a micro hydro project to help with.  RSS feed

 
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Hello. I've been helping a friend who does microhydro and solar in the Skagit area. Lately I've been traveling solo with my van and solar energy trailer and hoping to help with, or design a entire hydro system. I'm in the Applegate River area at present. Probably going to Northport, WA but I'm flexible.
I Ve learned the planning and ground work starts early to get the intake in the stream in late Summer or Fall when water is low. Please contact me at: chldscrick@yahoo.com. Thanks.
 
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Hi Jeremy,
I tried to contact you using your email address and my email was undeliverable.  Here's what my email said...

I'm in SW Oregon near the Umpqua River.  We have several small un-named streams that fall 200 feet or more on our land.   I don't have a good feeling about the flowrate, but I would guess that it is 10 to 100 gpm range depending on recent rainfall.  This system would augment solar during the winter months when we don't have much sun exposure.  The summer flows are probably too low when our solar exposure increases and could take up the slack.
 
Jeremy Baker
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Oops, sorry, missing a "l" in childscrick. Those little streams sound pretty good if other considerations are manageable and the flow is at least 50. Careful design and construction of the intake and penstock is an art and science to withstand the destructive highs and restrictive lows of stream flow. Always a challenge. Some streams are more steady. Yep, solar and hydro are like peanut butter and bananas. Go well together. Please send another email to childscrick@yahoo.com and let's talk. I'm actually passing through Umpqua Valley this morning. I'll stop at Roseburg and check email. Maybe we can connect. Thanks
 
Jeremy Baker
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Location: Nomadic
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I visited a wonderful homestead and potential microhydro/solar site in the Oregon coast range. Several interesting questions and design challenges arose:  First, the possibility of plumbing together the flow from springs from several nearby draws?  Second, estimating the flow from the co-joined stream supply? Third, the economics and power budget of a battery backup system if grid power is available at the existing structures? My experience is there is a lot of talk and little action when grid power is available. However, this place is "proof in the pudding" with a portable sawmill, solar well, solar irrigation, timber frame construction, reforestry, deforestry, community, grass fed bovines, etc....... !!!
My impression was as the occupants have no intention of moving then an off grid energy system might pay off fiscally. I suggested nickel iron batteries for semi permanent use. The extra effort of joining the streams together might very well be worth the effort and expense.
One thing I learned is always take a 5 gallon bucket to measure stream flow and start getting numbers for stream flow immediately. Minimize the guessing.
 
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Hello Jeremy,

My first post to this, or any, blog/forum. I don't have anything in you area, but I do hope you can provide encouragement/insight. Please check out Boshell Mill, Townley, Alabama on the internet. I am the proud owner of this site where there exists an 1898 stone masonry dam that is 10 feet high by 75 feet long. My problem, other than wisdom, wealth and confidence is the fact that the technology I find is directed to systems of high head / low flow. I have the opposite - low head / HUGE flow.I have great dreams for the place. But so far, only dreams  Please send any comments, critique or plain advice. Bless you for any generous gift of knowledge.
 
Jeremy Baker
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Howdy Wade, sorry, I was majorly sidetracked for 3 months. That place of yours sounds amazing. I've considered relocating to the middle of the country for various reasons.Look up Canyon Hydro. They are one of the leaders and may have low head experience and bigger turbines. Low head is the holy grail of hydro because there is so much potential. It is doable but from what I hear the efficiency of high head is higher with current technology.
What scale are you considering? If you are supplementing solar with hydro then a hydro that produces a few hundred watts continuously is a big step forward. And fairly inexpensive. The battery, if you have one, can be much smaller.
I'd be very interested in speaking with you about testing low head hydro units at your site? As I think it is the future of hydro.
I am sending a message to you, PM
Thanks, Jeremy
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