Micro hydro is one of the various renewable energy options and choices that can be chosen, but what is this and how does it work? To be effective a source of running water must be located, and this is combined with a turbine that turns as the liquid flows over the equipment. It is possible to generate about 100K of power in ideal circumstances, and this is enough to handle the electricity needs of a home or little rural community.
This type of system is very popular in emerging countries, and it is fairly inexpensive to construct. The energy generated is free once the savings reach the initial cost that the project had. Often this method is used together with solar power systems, because when one of these is not available the other is.
Some sources of water may not work well for this type of system. In some areas there may be an excess of this fluid at times but in other seasons the natural supply may run low or dry up completely. If this happens then no electricity can be generated until it is replenished. A river, creek, small reservoir, or even a natural waterfall can be a terrific location for a micro hydro plant.
Hydro generation does not have any harmful emissions, and when properly planned out and executed there will be no negative environmental impacts either. The water flow that is diverted should be joined back with the main flow once it has fulfilled the intended purpose.
The flow rate and the strength of the fluid will determine just how much power is generated. For small properties with only a small area of slow moving water the effectiveness of this type of system may be much lower than an area which has numerous supply sources and faster rates. A professional analysis of the potential site should be performed in most cases to ensure suitability for this purpose.