Renewable energy: Micro Hydraulic Power Unit (Spiral Type Pico-Hydro Unit “PicoPica10”, “PicoPica500”)
Micro Hydraulic Power Unit for Electricity Generation in Small-scale, Low-head Environments
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Spiral PicoPica Hydraulic Power Unit is a promising pico-hydro power generation equipment which has potential for dissemination in non-electrified areas, with its characteristics including low-head generation and dust-resistance. There are two types of units, “PicoPica10” and “PicoPica500”
“PicoPica10” is a unit that enables around 10W generation by securing a flow of 10ℓ/sec and a head of 0.1m. This product can be manually assembled and utilized as security lighting, drawing power from a nearby waterway. “PicoPica10” has already been sold over 500 sets within Japan as an environmental education material.
On the other hand, “PicoPica500” enables around 500W generation by securing a higher flowrate of 100ℓ/sec and a head of 0.7m. The generated energy can be equivalent to an average Japanese household’s electricity consumption.
If this product is implemented in developing countries where electrification is an issue, people’s lifestyle can be modernized, resulting in providing enormous social and cultural impact.
I. Low Head Generation
This product can generate electricity with lower head compared to other hydraulic power generation units.
II. Dust Resistance
Besides having an open-type and simple structure for easy installation, the spiral shape of the watermill prevents the unit to be clogged with floating substances or dusts.
-Installation method: To set on waterway by more than 2 persons
-Material for environmental education
-Simple security lighting
-Weight: 250kg（Excluding installation frame）
-Installation method: To set it on waterway by crane trucks. Thereafter, fix it on waterway with anchor bolts.
-Night time lighting for studying or working
-Power for refrigerators for preserving food and medicine, telecommunication equipment such as cellular phone, and television.
This product allows you to generate with lower head compared to other hydraulic power generation units. As the whole structure of this watermill is open-type and simple, works such as assembly, installation, cleaning, and maintenance can be completed with ease. Besides, the spiral shape watermill prevents the unit to be clogged with floating substances or dusts.
Because this product doesn’t require large waterways or pressure tubes for installation and there are not many component parts, this product is cost-effective compared to another hydraulic generation units. When installed, the frame and the main body create a head by damming the waterway.
So this product can be installed and operated smoothly as long as the waterway ensures required flow for generation. Regarding main consumables (such as bearing, generator, and watermill turbine) that require maintenance, no special skill will be needed to exchange them. Consequently, troubles can be repaired promptly.
PicoPica10 enables around 10W generation by securing a flow of 10ℓ/sec and a head of 0.1m.
PicoPica500 enables around 500W generation by securing a flow of 100ℓ/sec and a head of 0.7m.
Power generated by PicoPica500 adapts to various voltage/frequency through using a transformer.
Technical maturity / Past record of introduction
Since 2011 to date, we have sold around 500 sets of PicoPica10, spiral type pico-hydro generation unit, within Japan. PicoPica500 was released on December 2017 and it has already been placed in Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. Sales expansion will be further promoted.
※This innovation seed information is reprinted with permission from UNIDO ITPO Tokyo’s STePP website.