Making the Most of Hydroelectric Sites’ Operations: A Sustainable Approach
In this presentation, we will talk about how a hydroelectric site can and should be utilized to not just maximize their potential energy output, but as well, how to conduct more sustainable operations at the same time. Generally speaking, a hydroelectric site covers a good portion of land. That land can be surveyed, and a feasibility study performed for the installation of other sources of renewable energy, one that can be fitted pretty easily are vertical wind turbines and we will talk about that. The pond itself, even if it is a standard hydro plant or a pumped hydro plant, can be used to install floating solar panels. Downstream of the plant, after the water is turbined and/or during spillway operations (of course, depends on the spillway design and the tailrace design), additional in-stream turbines can be used. All of these solutions are already in the market! To reduce as well the impact of the normal operations of an hydro site, we will talk about electrification or “hydrogenization” of the operation’s vehicle fleet, including equipment like forklifts, manlifts, boats, etc. As well, we will talk about the feasibility of substitution of emergency diesel sets by hydrogen fuel cells. We will discuss technologies like oil-free Kaplan turbines, oil free air compressors, oil alternatives for hydraulic governors, and energy efficiency measures inside the powerhouse and around the hydro site. All of these to show that a hydro site is not just raw hydroelectricity.
Javier is a Mechanical Engineer, with 17 years of experience in my field, in the renewable energy since 2005. He holds the Certified Energy Management® Professional Certification, by the Association of Energy Engineers, and in 2017 I obtained the Renewable Energy Professional® certification. During these years, he had participated in the development of various projects related to the efficient use of energy on industrial, commercial and domestic facilities, working from the “utility side”, helping customers (mainly high consumption customers like steel and aluminum mills) to develop projects and measures to reduce their energy consumption, as part of a government directive. Also, he holds the Project Management Professional® international certification, and apply the PMI principles in his projects. He coordinated and executed many interdisciplinary projects that required the use of his skills in Mechanical Engineering, Project Management, and the interaction with different departments of the companies that he had worked for, and external stakeholders (suppliers, contractors, etc.). He lives in Canada. One of his recent career milestones had been to be the first plant manager for Muskrat Falls, the most recent big hydroelectric development in Canada, and now he is starting his own consulting firm focused on engineering and project management consulting for Renewable Energy, Sustainability and Energy Efficiency projects, and initiatives, called Hysovent Limited.