Storage System Manufacturability, Portability and Modularity for a Pico Hydro Turbine
Keywords:pico hydro, storage system, battery
Pico hydro (<5 kW) is a type of power plant that could solve the problem of electricity access in remote, hilly regions with a water source, because investment and operational costs for such systems are lower than for wind turbines or solar PV. One obstacle often encountered in the use of pico hydro turbines is low RPM. It is possible to solve this problem using a DC generator and battery. This study will examine the design for a portable storage system that is easy to manufacture and operate. Three pieces of equipment are needed in designing such a storage system: a power source (DC generator), a battery with a capacity of 13-15 volts and 6 amperes, and a DC-to-AC converter. Storage system reliability is tested with four load variations: 12 Watts, 18 Watts, 37 Watts, and 46 Watts. In a 12-Watt load test, the storage system can operate for 355 minutes, while an 18-Watt test results in 137 minutes of operation, a 37-watt test lasts for 54 minutes, and a 46-Watt tests operates for 44 minutes. A Pelton turbine (<20 Watts) is used to charge the system. The Pelton turbine requires 905 minutes to charge a battery from a capacity of 23% to a capacity of 97%. To ensure the storage system operates well, charging is also enabled using solar PV (30-40 watts). By using solar PV, the storage system was charged within 476 minutes (08:42-16:38 IWST). Such a storage system provides good modularity because it weighs only 38 kg and takes up a volume of 0.016 m3; it is also portable, easy to use, and easy to manufacture, as the key components are a battery and a DC-to-AC converter.