The Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV) has a Hydraulic and Irrigation Laboratory (LHIR) dependent on the Department of Rural and Agricultural Engineering.
It is a pioneering research facility consisting of a closed circuit with a lower and an upper tank with an associated pumping station. Additionally the pumps of the pumping station, provided with frequency inverters, can be powered from the electrical grid or by solar panels. One of the objectives of the laboratory is to carry out validation tests of various hydraulic elements present in water supply networks such as flow meters or valves of various types. The manufacturers of this equipment collaborate with the laboratory in order to be sure that their products work properly according with their specifications. Additionally the laboratory is also used to carry out teaching practices by students of grade and master in engineering.
The objective of the installation of the small hydraulic turbine is to analyze in detail the feasibility of using PATs (pumps used as turbine) as a source of renewable energy in drinking water and irrigation distribution networks. Also show its operation and possible applications during teaching practices of the engineering students.
With this objective, the PAT has been equipped wit sensors for measuring pressure at the inlet and the outlet, a flow meter and a digital display for monitoring electrical parameters such as battery voltage, turbine generator output voltage and generated power.
The rated working point of the turbine is 6.5 liters/second, pressure drop of 15 meters and 375W of generated power. The electric equipment is composed by the turbine control panel, that includes an electronic battery charge controller, a 24 volt battery bank and a 1200 watt offgrid inverter. Additionally the system also has the possibility of charging the batteries from the electrical grid to maintain them in charge while the turbine is not being used for test.
Installation date: July 2020