Types of hydro power plant

Types of Hydro Power Plant

There are three types of hydro power plant facilities: impoundment, diversion, and pumped storage. Some hydro power plants use dams and some do not.

Moreover, Hydro power plants range in size from small systems for a home to large projects producing electricity for utilities. The sizes of hydro power plants describe below.The following are the types of hydro power plant.


A diversion, sometimes called run-of-river, facility channels a portion of a river through a canal or pen-stock.Moreover, It may not require the use of a dam.


Another type of hydro power called pumped storage works like a battery, storing the electricity generated by other power sources like solar, wind, and nuclear for later use. thus, It stores energy by pumping water uphill to a reservoir at higher elevation from a second reservoir at a lower elevation. When the demand for electricity is low, a pumped storage facility stores energy by pumping water from a lower reservoir to an upper reservoir. During periods of high electrical demand, the water is released back to the lower reservoir and turns a turbine, generating electricity.

Pumped Storage
Pumped Storage


The most common type of hydroelectric power plant is an impoundment facility. An impoundment facility, typically a large hydro power system, uses a dam to store river water in a reservoir. Moreover, Water released from the reservoir flows through a turbine, spinning it, which in turn activates a generator to produce electricity. The water may be released either to meet changing electricity needs or to maintain a constant reservoir level.

Impoundment type of hydro power plant


Facilities range in size from large power plants that supply many consumers with electricity to small and micro plants that individuals operate for their own energy needs or to sell power to utilities.

Large Hydropower

Although definitions vary, DOE defines large hydropower as facilities that have a capacity of more than 30 megawatts (MW).

Small Hydropower

Although definitions vary, DOE defines small hydropower as projects that generate 10 MW or less of power.

Micro Hydropower

A micro hydropower plant has a capacity of up to 100 kilowatts. A small or micro-hydroelectric power system can produce enough electricity for a home, farm, ranch, or village.

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