Innovation is at the core of everything we do at Hallidays Hydropower. Many in the hydro industry believe it to be antiquated with comments such as “that’s just the way it has always been done”. Our experience and beliefs are to the contrary and we have a successful track record of using our innovations in technology & process to achieve lower capital costs and improved outputs.

Our sound understanding of the economics of every project we manage tends to be the driving force behind the development of our new solutions and proprietary innovations. The main focus for our innovation is reduction in the time and cost of installations whilst taking into account sustainability, durability, efficiency and environmental impact.

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A solar powered battery and fresh water station

Here at Hallidays we are also passionate about bringing renewable power to remote and developing nations.  1.5 billion people lack access to electricity (ref: WHO) and these can mainly be found in Africa’s and Asia’s rural areas.  The infrastructure for long distance transmission of electricity often does not exist in these areas and the construction of large-scale power plants is not economically feasible.

Working closely with charitable aid projects, our mission is to use our knowledge and experience of water, to bring sustainable energy and clean drinking water to developing nations.  We believe that electricity can lead to education and skills development whilst clean water brings about sanitation and health. These are the cornerstones to enabling communities to thrive with abundance just as we have had the opportunity to do.

Hallidays envisage “battery stations” where locals can pay a small rent to collect a fully charged (by hydropower), long-lasting and portable battery. When the battery is dead, they bring it back and swap it for a new one. They can power low energy fridges, LED light bulbs and other electrical items so they can read, work and cook at night.

Water filtration units can also operate from the ever-flowing source of energy provided by micro- and pico-hydropower units. Communities tend to develop close to the water’s edge, opening up opportunities to use the water sustainably for power and once filtered, as a potable water source.

In this changing world, the hydropower sector has to develop solutions that work within tighter budgets and more isolated, remote or difficult to reach areas.

Here we are currently working on a number of very exciting and cutting edge projects:

Pico is the term used for hydro electric power generation of under 5kW.

There is an ever-growing need and opportunity to supply electricity to underserved populations in developing countries and remote locations.  This is where the Pico Barrel comes into play – a throw-in, ‘plug and play’, pico turbine for use in fast flowing streams and rivers to power local electronics, charge batteries, refrigeration and water filtration etc.

Extensive R&D work into the output, size, shape, flight design, and material, taking into account durability, reliability, cost, weight, water resistance etc. has been carried out by our R&D team.

We have a prototype under test in Manchester and patenting has begun.  Hallidays hope to deploy this lightweight, easily shippable system in developing nations across the globe.

Hallidays Hydropower believe that the building of new, large scale dams is unnecessary given the capability of our innovative systems for effectively ‘plug and play’ solutions for existing water impoundments.  We believe that retrofit hydropower solutions will be the future of micro-hydro in the UK and developed nations and that there are abundant existing dams into which our technologies can be installed without having to build new ones.  Hallidays are working to patent this system urgently as we are currently going through planning permission for the first prototype.

One of our preferred solutions for low-head hydropower installations, is the Archimedean screw turbine. It has numerous versatile benefits for these applications however principally its fish friendly nature draws us to it.

The steel screw turbine has been used in hydropower since 1990 and only really coming into wide scale deployment in the early 2000’s. The basis for this technology has simply been the reverse of an Archimedes screw pump. There have been very few innovative changes made to the screw for its new use in hydropower.

Steel screw turbines have significant manufacturing and transportation costs due to the heavy and large components.  A lightweight, durable and modular designed turbine would greatly reduce these costs and also allow easy transportation to remote locations, both nationally and internationally.

Extensive prototype development and testing has been carried out to determine the optimal high-tech polymer to be used whilst also taking into account numerous locking mechanism designs of the modules. Durability, weight and ease of installation are the key driving parameters behind the innovation.  This new turbine is now going through patenting and rigorous testing.

In addition to this, our analysts and programmers carry out exciting work on the following:

Using a series of mathematical modelling techniques, programming, and building from prior academic research (including research papers from ancient Rome), we are developing a specialised software calculator to quickly and autonomously determine the optimal parameters (radius, pitch, angle, length, etc.) of an Archimedean screw turbine for the head and flow of a given site with specific relation to hydropower. This will enable much faster design cycles and allow a move away from ‘rule of thumb’ empirical estimations from the screw pumping industry, towards more accurate, hydropower focussed and analytical designs.

An extension of the geometric optimisation calculator, our bespoke CAD plug-in allows the near-instant production of a fully realised and optimised 3-dimensional screw design from any given head and flow; or alternatively, allows more customisable manual designs to be produced quickly and easily via parametric modelling and the automation of the process of generating the Archimedean screw geometry.

Coupled with the mathematical modelling of screws, in-depth computational fluid dynamic studies are also underway to further analyse the flow behaviour throughout the Archimedean screw turbine in greater detail – in an effort to refine and verify the existing models. This will give us a real-time intake flow calculator thereby improving predicted and actual power generation and efficiency calculations.

A zero head turbine able to harness energy from the flow of water alone, unlike most turbines which rely on a head, or drop. The horizontal auger is suspended beneath a specially designed floating platform which enables access for maintenance and holds electrical components out of the water. Its simple installation involves tethering to banks, bridges or pontoons.

The ECO-Auger® is currently installed and being tested by our partners in Florida, USA. The ECO-Auger can produce 0.5kW – 50kW individually or substantially more if you were to run them in series. For more information, visit www.eco-auger.com

Our goal is to transform how projects are successfully maintained and managed within the hydropower industry. We were awarded a grant under the ERDF funding programme to carry out the development of an improved system for coordinating the maintenance of hydropower projects whilst ensuring that they are maintained to the manufacturer’s specifications.

Understanding your projects instantly and intimately; the who, what, why and when is key to a successful operation.

The more data you capture, the more you learn. The more you learn, the more control you have and the better your cash flow.