How Hydropower Plants Work Term Paper 4 pages

Hydroelectric Power: The Renewable Energy Source

For centuries, human have been relying solely on the use of fossil fuel to produce energy. To anticipate the exhaustive use of fossil fuel that has hit the highest point and issued the fear of energy source shortage in the next decades, it is urgent to investigate the closest and renewable potentials to cover the advanced needs of energy.

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
How Hydropower Plants Work Term Paper 4 pages
Just from $9/Page
Order Essay

One of the most popular sources that have been thoroughly investigated and mechanically tested is the use of hydroelectric power. Hydroelectric power plant utilizes natural power from the flowing water, which is channeled into a turbine. The flowing water holds enormous energy to spin the turbine and operate generators. Human can get endless supply of electricity from dams, rivers, waterfalls, or artificial channels.

Unlike the fossil fuel, flowing-water power doesn’t run out as long as the water cycle is kept undamaged. This renewable energy source does not limit energy consumption to the earth content and applies easily on many types of water sources. In this way human obtain enough supply without having to destroy the environment for another oilrigs.

Hydropower also has more benefits and less pollution impact as created by another form of power plant. Hydropower plants produce lower gas emissions to the atmosphere than diesel or fossil fuel power plants do. It does not produce liquid waste either. On the other hand, hydropower plants enable the surrounding population to control the water level, reduce the flood risk, obtain regular irrigation schedule for their plantations and enough electricity (Coface Environmental Guidelines, 2002. p. 2)

Hydroelectric plant can be developed in large basis, such as at dams and water reservoirs, as well as in small scale use, for example for home and farms (National Renewable Energy Laboratory, -. par. 2, 4).

Large plants are built on dams and water reservoirs. The system utilizes the high-head hydro principle, which generates energy from the water stream. Water molecules contain potential energy, when after acceleration of its fall from the top of the dam is converted into kinetic energy, which then spins the turbine (Ordal, 2002. par. 2).

Many outsized dams use the high head standard. The higher the source of water, the higher kinetic energy it will create. As a result, many dams were built in towering construction, like Hoover Dam, Colorado, and most power plants in Norway.

Dam as the main construction is built to collect water from nearby streams. It can be a single block of a giant river, or take up input from several waterways. Dams are usually built with extremely high construction that allows the collected water to reach elevated level of the water surface, which makes it an artificial lake.

Down above the bottom of the dam, a channel is connecting the dam with the turbine pipe, secured with the control gate. When the control gate opens, water comes into the penstock channeling to the turbine and spins it. The turbine rotation activates the magnetic power in the generator and produces alternating current (AC) power. The power goes to the transformer and distributed later as the electricity. Meanwhile, the excess of water from the process exits through the outflow passage, into the normal stream or river on the other side of the dam (Bonsor, 2003. par. 6-12). The water storage at the dam is known as impoundment hydropower.

There is also another type of hydropower that pumps water from the lower to upper reservoir. The technique allows the plant to control the water consumption in the plant. When there is a great of electricity, the water is flowed back to the lower reservoir to turn the turbine (U.S. Department of Energy Hydropower Program, 2001. p. 3).

As for national scale, governments need to allocate serious investment to fund reservoirs development and facilities to integrate the power and electricity resulted. In the U.S., hydroelectric power use is taking about 7% of total energy source (Electric Power Monthly, as cited in U.S. Department of Energy Hydropower Program, 2001. p. 5). China also has moved on with the newest project of the Three Gorges Dam. The dam would be taking 400 miles for the reservoir only (Ordal, 2002).

However this technology sometimes does not work under specific circumstances. Norway, for example, ranked the sixth from the top hydroelectric generating countries in 1998. The country depends much on the hydroelectric stations that provide it economical source of electricity for its people. Once the government realized that they had trouble during the dry year, the electricity cost had increased to 400%. The prolonged dry season had left the dams empty that only limited sources of stored energy left, causing extreme hikes on electricity cost. It might cost 2-3 times higher than usual for the people to keep their houses warm and businesses to stay open.

Although reported to be efficient and satisfying, the development of large dams and utilization of powerful turbines have created superfluous effects that have traumatized the adjacent environment. (U.S. Department of Energy Hydropower Program, 2001. p. 7).

The main consideration is, such huge construction and landscape alteration required to build a dam will affect the organisms living in the streams and the natural platform of the neighboring areas. Dam construction will at least destroy the farms and villages, forcing the inhabitants to relocate; which costs very high.

The other obvious concern is about the threatened fish lifecycle in the river. The powerful movement of the water into the penstock and the turbine rotation has been proven of killing fishes in the rivers. The gravitation force draw fishes into the penstock, and the sharp blades of the turbine instantly bash them into pieces or leave them injured.

In North America, the dam operation is reported in endangering young fishes life, as the fishes are sucked into the pipes and smashed onto the wall, while others are killed for increasing water pressure inside the unit (Stoner, 2002. par. 7). Moreover, it is important to consider that the barrier effect of the dam building most likely blockade the natural salmon journey to the spawning site. Some dams have implemented ladder structures for the salmons to make their way through their home, however this method has been reported ineffective.

The U.S. Department of Energy recently introduced the new Advanced Turbine Technology to reduce the violent effect of the hydropower plant to the fishes. The new turbine has less blades and noise, and allows water to pass with less shocking effect to the fishes carried in the water. The design allows the turbine to produce more energy, around 6% greater than the conventional one (Stoner, 2002).

From the previous study, the advanced turbine technology reduces fish mortality to less than 2%, while on the current turbine system may reach 5-30%. Moreover, the turbine also retains the Dissolved Oxygen level to 6 mg/L, which meets the standard water quality for the existence of the organisms (U.S. Department of Energy Hydropower Program, 2001. p 7). The quality of this instrument is yet to be tested to find out whether it fulfills the need of environmentally friendly hydropower plant.

Works Cited

Bonsor, Kevin. “How Hydropower Plants Work.” 2003. How Stuff Works. 5 Mar. 2003.

Coface Environmental Guidelines. “Hydroelectric Power Stations and Large Dams.” November 2002. Coface Consulting. 5 Mar. 2003.

National Renewable Energy Laboratory. “Introduction to Hydroelectric Power.” Clean Energy Basic. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. 5 Mar. 2003.

Ordal, David. “Technology: How Hydro Actually Works.” 2002. Hydro Power. Department of Physics and Astronomy Pomona College. 5 Mar. 2003.

Stoner, Mark. “Hydropower: Environmental Effects.” 2002. Hydro Power. Department of Physics and Astronomy Pomona College. 5 Mar. 2003.

US Department of Energy Hydropower Program. “Hydropower Partnership With The Environment.” 2001. U.S. Department of Energy Hydropower Program. 5 Mar. 2003.

Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply

Buy Custom Essay

Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?

Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.

Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?

  • Plagiarism free papers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any deadline
  • Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Adherence to paper instructions
  • Ability to tackle bulk assignments
  • Reasonable prices
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Get superb grades consistently

Online Academic Help With Different Subjects


Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.


Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.

Computer science

Computer science is a tough subject. Fortunately, our computer science experts are up to the match. No need to stress and have sleepless nights. Our academic writers will tackle all your computer science assignments and deliver them on time. Let us handle all your python, java, ruby, JavaScript, php , C+ assignments!


While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.


Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.


In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.


Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.


We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!


We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.


Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.

What discipline/subjects do you deal in?

We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.

Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?

Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.

What if I don’t like the paper?

There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.

Reasons being:

  • When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
  • We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.

In the event that you don’t like your paper:

  • The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
  • We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
  • Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.

Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?

Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.

What if the paper is plagiarized?

We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.

When will I get my paper?

You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.

Will anyone find out that I used your services?

We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.

How our Assignment  Help Service Works

1.      Place an order

You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.

2.      Pay for the order

Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.

3.      Track the progress

You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.

4.      Download the paper

The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.

smile and order essaysmile and order essay PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!

order custom essay paper