The installation of the Beasley Weir hydro scheme, near Dulverton, was completed and commissioned in early November. The main picture above shows the head of the 78 kW Archimedes screw and generator from within the turbine house. The turbine house is a lightweight timber structure, imitating the form of the previous structure that it replaced, and is located above the Archimedes screw (shown below). The Archimedes screw itself is located to the side of the river at the head of a newly constructed intake and sits adjacent to the large Pool and Weir fish pass situated in the main river course. The picture (below right) shows the turbine house, screw turbine and part of the fish pass to the right. The larger picture below shows the fish pass in its full glory.
The images below show the turbine house as viewed from the intake and the top of the fish pass, looking downstream. Water passes through the screen, leaving behind most sizeable pieces of debris, before passing underneath the turbine house to the head of the Archimedes screw.
Inside the turbine house is where all electrical components of the hydro scheme are located, including the head of the Archimedes screw and turbine generator (see main picture above), but also monitoring and control gear. The control screen (below left), for instance, gives an overview of the system’s performance in real-time, as well as other key indicators. The control system at this and other hydro schemes installed by Renewables First enable the turbine and generator to be monitored and controlled remotely.
The Beasley Weir hydro scheme represents a fine example of sustainability within the Exmoor National Park, generating significant amounts of pollution free electricity from the energy in moving water. Furthermore, given that the River Barle is one of the most important trout and salmon spawning watercourses in the south west, the much improved Pool and Weir fish pass, does much to improve the passage of fish at this stage of the river. The requirement for the hydro scheme to enhance the aquatic ecology of the river was strongly driven by the owner of the scheme.
The hydro scheme is estimated to generate approximately 320,000 kWh of electricity per year, equivalent to powering well over 100 UK homes.
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