Renewable energy is one of the most effective tools we have in the fight against climate change, and is the cleanest pathway to achieve sustainable development. Renewable energy contributes to about 25% of total electricity generated in the world from numerous sources, such as hydro, solar, wind and geothermal. Decentralized renewable energy sources present a substantial untapped potential, especially in the form of micro and small hydro power projects. One such example is generating power by applying the principles of hydrokinetic energy.
Maclec Technical Project Laboratory has developed a simple, sustainable and indigenous hydropower innovation called VARUN III. VARUN III is a reliable, sustainable and environment friendly technology that caters to the 24x7 electricity demand. The deployment of this technology can be beneficial for rural electrification and development of remote areas situated close to perennial water bodies, such as rivers, canals and streams. VARUN III has various innovative features. One such feature being debris-free turbine technology- wherein the turbine is fit between a floating case, which provides buoyancy to the turbine module to remain half submerged and other important parts, such as generator to stay above the water surface. The buoyant floating case also provides sufficient space for debris, silt and floating material to pass through without reacting on the turbine surface. This unique feature helps avoid the installation of any additional structure such as trash rack. The installation and running cost of VARUN III is similar to an off-grid solar power plant, but unlike solar PV, it can generate power continuously till there is adequate flow of water. VARUN III has modules ranging from 1kW-100kW. There is also a natural calamity warning and control system installed 10 km upstream, which constantly shares data with the power station in real time. The revenue generation model is similar to other renewable energy projects in which power is sold to consumers through power purchase agreements (PPA).
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