skip to main content

SciTech ConnectSciTech Connect

Title: Final Report of the HyPER Harvester Project

The HyPER Harvester Project resulted in the first full­scale design, fabrication and testing of two vertical­axis harvester prototypes at the Elephant Butte Irrigation District Drop 8 Station in Southern New Mexico. The design, followed by fabrication, and deployment clearly demonstrated the feasibility to manufacture and deploy harvester prototypes at low cost. While several issues common to irrigation canal systems have to be overcome, the electromechanical performance of the integrated turbine­generator system demonstrated proof­of­concept. Proof­of­concept includes 1) feasibility for using additive manufacturing techniques to fabricate Carbon­composite turbine­generator components at low cost, 2) ease of transportation and deployment, and 3) the harvester performance. The benefits of modularity were demonstrated in terms of rapid deployment at the Drop 8 Station. Scalability and adaptability were proven in terms of the custom­fitting characteristics that enabled rapid deployment. While keeping the same shape and form, the harvester can be easily adapted to any drop environment. Self­supporting ability makes the harvester design minimally intrusive on existing structures. There are two technical challenges ahead that have to be addressed. Irregular flow patterns in canal flow induce vertical oscillations due to pressure change across the impeller. Despite the nosecone in conventional Kaplan turbine design that ordinarily dampens oscillations, anmore » effective coupling design is required to eliminate the hydrodynamic effect on the generating system. In arid areas where tumbleweed is present, a robust design to prevent trash entering the drop is required. The compact shape and form have an aesthetic appearance and appear to illustrate an environmentally friendly attribute. The systems­engineered design enables rapid manufacturing and assembly of desired size units that can be deployed at sites along U.S. waterways as small hydropower plants. There is worldwide potential for this technology to provide sustainable hydropower to communities isolated from grid­ supply.« less
 [1] ;  [1]
  1. New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Wind and Water Technologies Office (EE-4W)
Contributing Orgs:
Elephant Butte Irrigation District (EBID)
Country of Publication:
United States
13 HYDRO ENERGY; 42 ENGINEERING Low­-head hydropower, Vertical­axis turbine, Submarine­type turbine­-generator