We started in micro hydro in 2003. Immediately we faced a problem in the lack of availability of good quality low cost turbines. Subsequently we had to build our own. Initially we used Gilkes cast bronze pelton runners but the limited range of sizes and low flow capacity meant that many applications would need belt drives and sub optimal designs. In 2006 we started using a modular turgo design that uses individually cast stainless turgo buckets.
By 2010 we had completed about 40 schemes, mainly using our turgo machines. Increasingly we were approached by other companies that wished us to supply turbines for sites they were developing. As a result of this, Hydrover Turbines Ltd was formed in early 2011. Since then we have built 27 turbines totalling 500kW of installed capacity.
The number and size of buckets used on a can be varied and runners can therefore be built specifically to meet the head, flow and generator rpm requirements for a particular site. The turbines we supply are all direct drive. This approach means that significant improvements in efficiency and reliability are possible as well as removing the need for maintenance associated with transmission and extra bearings. More recently the availability of 6, 8 and 10 poleinduction generators, coupled to 3,4 and even 6 jet turbines has meant that our turgos can be used on much lower heads and higher flows than was previously possible. We can now pass 150l/sec on 30m head for around 33kW on a direct drive turbine… 5 years ago the most we could manage on 30m head was under 10kW.