Low Head Hydroelectric Development on Madera Canal

by Richard L. Hearth, Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade &, Douglas Inc, Sacramento, CA, USA,
Robert L. Stanfield, Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade &, Douglas Inc, Sacramento, CA, USA,
Mario Santoyo, Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade &, Douglas Inc, Sacramento, CA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Waterpower '85


The Madera-Chowchilla Power Authority with cooperation from the U. S. Bureau of Reclamation has been successful in the development of four hydroelectric plants at five head drops on the Madera Canal. A study to determine the feasibility of adding hydroelectric plants to facilities features on the canal was finished in 1981. Two license applications were filed on four canal sites with one application covering three sites. The best site was developed and financed first with a revenue bond issue while the other three were developed by using a lease arrangement. The Power Authority chose two different types of standard energy purchase contracts with the local utility company. The design was made to optimize net revenues through maximization of head, optimization of the generation/size ratio and in one instance the combination of two closely located drop sites into one plant. Each of the four sites is equipped with one horizontal full Kaplan tube turbine. Overall, the construction costs of the plants were 2,089/KW; the project has a plant factor of 40% and a generation/capacity factor of 3,500 KWH/KW.

Subject Headings: Head (fluid mechanics) | Hydro power | Canals | Feasibility studies | Revenues | Power transmission | Power plants | Team building

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