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Rural small hydrokinetic energy

A small portable source of electricity from streams can help development to large areas of South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia.

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Pioneer Valley Renewables makes run of river turbines that are double the efficiency of what is on the market. This makes it the most efficient and easily installed source of energy whenever there is running water nearby. There is no need to make a dam, and this technology meets or exceeds the efficiency of small dams. Depending on size and speed, even our small turbines are 50-60% efficient and operate continuously. By contrast, wind turbines are around 30% and solar photovoltaic around 10-15% and operate only part of the day. Our technology was validated by utility testing in the Connecticut River and simulations by the US Navy, division of Advanced Surface Warfare, and the Navy gave us a grant to design a portable version. And two patents are already granted. We did a time motion study that showed two regular people can assemble and install it in less than 10 minutes.

Explain your idea

We solve the problem of rural electricity in huge parts of the developing world which have large amounts of water. Water is the most reliable and efficient source of electricity. Even a location near the equator may not be able to use solar energy because of the jungle tree cover. It is designed to be installed easily with cables. It works because of shroud/blade innovations developed through the use of Computational Fluid Dynamics.

Who Benefits?

The beneficiaries are small villages near streams and canals from the Amazon to Nepal. This can provide electricity for refrigerating medicines and food, cell phones, and basic lighting. It is an enabler of many of the steps that need to be taken to improve lives in the developing world.

How is your idea unique?

Our idea is unique because of the efficiency of the turbine components. It means we an accomplish the same thing as others in half the size, so it is easier to handle. We don't know of other organizations taking this approach. Also even our small turbines start producing electricity in streams of 0.3 meters per second, whereas most of those on the market start at around 1 meter per second, so it gives access to situations other turbines can't handle. We are making certain parts with light and strong carbon fiber, so they are easier to install.

Idea Proposal Stage

  • Piloting: I have started to implement my solution as a whole with a first set of real users.

Tell us more about you

Pioneer Valley Renewables is a company located in Massachusetts. The technology was invented by the CEO and simulated with a professor at Tel Aviv University School of Engineering and by the US Navy. The company is concentrating on the technology and manufacturing; we are looking for agencies and distributors to get the product to the end users.

Expertise in sector

  • 7+ years

Organization Filing Status

  • Yes, we are a registered company.

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