Energy Efficiency, Geothermal, Hydropower

Micro-hydro Technology Recovering Energy in Australia

Kinentic energy recovery technology is being used at a mine in western Australia to recover energy from the circulation of re-use water that is used in the operation of the mine. West Energy, maker of the West KERS unit, announced on Tuesday that its technology is now in place at the mine and is successfully operating. The company said that its technology results in a cost and carbon output reduction through decreased diesel fuel consumption at the mine.

West KERS uses low head-micro hydro technology to recovery of energy from fluid flows. It has the capacity to harness excess energy from fluid flows without impeding the fluid flow with pressure heads as small as 1.5 metres and volumes as low as 100 litres per second, according to the company. The technology ranges in size and the company said it has the capacity to be applied to flows up to 100,000 litres per second with power output capacities of up to 50-MW per unit and reasonable capital and operation costs.

The company said that its technology can be applied to thermal and hydro power stations, aqueducts, irrigation systems, water corporations and waste water treatment plants to enhance the efficiency of their operations while reducing their energy costs and carbon footprint.

West Energy also said that it is in negotiations for multiple projects across Australia, the UK and Africa.

Energy recovery at oil and gas wells is also being explored by geothermal companies as was explained in the feature story, Oil and Gas Coproduction Expands Geothermal Power Possibilities, that ran last month.