A Review of the Pico-Hydro Turbine: Studies on the Propeller Hydro Type
The pico-hydro turbine is one hydropower scheme that has been widely used in off-grid settlements around the globe. The implementation of this stand-alone system is chosen due to its cost-effectiveness and robustness in producing electricity, under low head conditions. This type of turbine is capable of producing power outputs of up to 5 kW. It is green energy technology that does not require water storage, and the initial set-up is very easy and straight forward. The propeller turbine is one of the most popular types of pico-hydro scheme that have been implemented extensively in remote areas, especially in Asia. However, little research has been conducted regarding the enhancement or development of pico-hydro turbines. This study will review previous research on the propeller hydro turbine, which mostly deals with low head and high flow rate conditions. The main components of the propeller turbine and the basic working principles of the run-of-river type will be highlighted. The conclusions will consider the main components in propeller hydro turbine systems which have been investigated by previous researchers to enhance the efficiency and performance. Suggestions for future studies on the application of the propeller hydro turbine will also be discussed.
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