Low Cost Pico Generators use Water Pressure to generate power
The Norwegian company Zeropex has developed a line of pico hydro electric generators that can be installed in facilities that pressurize water as part of their normal processing routine. Many industries like nuclear power stations, coal mining operations and municipal utilities have to pressurize water to move it through their equipment or to purify it using reverse osmosis. The Zeropex technology allows these businesses the opportunity to utilize that heretofore wasted energy.
The idea of pico generators --small systems that can generate up to 5KW of power from falling water--is not new, but until now the cost of installing the technology didn't offset the energy gained. But Zeropex's system is currently costing only $2 to $2.5 in capital expenses per watt generated.
Since the unit requires very little maintenance -- an estimated six to twelve hours per year -- pico hydro is being considered by Scotland, according to a recent comment made by a Scottish Cabinet Secretary Michael Russell. Companies like Nordic Green II are already replacing pressure reduction valves with turbines that can potentially generate up to 89KW of power that would have otherwise gone to waste.