With the growing concern of global warming and the need for clean power generation, small-scale hydraulic turbines, solar cells and wind power generation is attracting growing attention. Among them, the small-scale hydraulic turbine power generator which provides power from mostly waste water is something we will see increasingly in the future. It provides a practical and simple solution as a source of energy.
Kubota have been developing reverse running pump turbines for the small-scale hydraulic turbine power generation for a number of years. They have delivered the machines to one hundred or more power plants in developing countries. The systems are based on pump technology such as the fluid dynamics, the manufacturing and engineering techniques which have been developed over many years at Kubota.
A reverse running pump turbine is a pump that operates in the reverse direction to obtain power. Since the general-purpose, mass-produced centrifugal pump can be used, it is suitable for micro hydraulic-power generation. There are various applications where the technology can be applied such as power generation from the maintenance discharge water from a dam. Also the head difference of a decompressed well, from a spring water tunnel or by the remaining pressure in a water service station or in a factory.
Usually, water is supplied to the appointed place of ordinary homes, factories and farmlands by the natural head difference of the geographical feature or the pressurisation of a pump. When the water pressure is too large, it is necessary to reduce the pressure by control valves, and as the result the hydraulic energy will be wasted uselessly.