Pressure-Time Flow Rate in Low Head Hydro Plants

by Charles W. Almquist, (M.ASCE), Principia Research Corp, Knoxville, United States,
David B. Hansen, Principia Research Corp, Knoxville, United States,
Gerald A. Schohl, (M.ASCE), Principia Research Corp, Knoxville, United States,
Patrick A. March, Principia Research Corp, Knoxville, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Fundamentals and Advancements in Hydraulic Measurements and Experimentation


Very few methods are accepted for measuring the flow in the large intakes typical of low head, run-of-the-river hydro plants. These intakes are characteristically short, non-uniform, non-prismatic, converging multi-bay designs. A previous numerical and theoretical analysis showed that the pressure-time (Gibson) method of flow measurement could be applied to this type of intake, even though such application is not currently approved by relevant test codes. This paper presents the results of a small-scale model study of a low head hydro plant intake which demonstrates the applicability of the method in this situation. The difficulties in dealing with the extremely low level signals involved are described, as are some of the techniques developed for dealing with them. The experiments show that flow measurement in this type of intake using the pressure-time method is possible.

Subject Headings: Flow rates | Low flow | Pressurized flow | Head (fluid mechanics) | Flow measurement | Power plants | Hydro power | Numerical analysis

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