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An Introduction to Hydroelectric Power Plant Structures

J. Paul Guyer, P.E., R.A., Fellow ASCE, Fellow AEI

The course discusses location, configuration and design considerations for hydroelectric powerhouses. The factors affecting the location include: Location of the spillway (when powerhouse is located adjacent to the dam); Location of navigation locks (on navigation projects); Foundation conditions; Valley width; River channel conditions below the dam; Accessibility; Location of switchyard and transmission lines. At projects where the powerhouse is located at the dam adjacent to the spillway, local conditions such as width of flood plain, accessibility, and depth of foundations will usually govern the location. On projects which will include a navigation lock, the powerhouse is preferably located at the opposite end of the spillway from the lock. Where the river channel below the dam has an appreciable fall, economic studies should be made to determine whether a remote powerhouse location downstream from the dam is justifiable.

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

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NY PE & PLS: You must choose courses that are technical in nature or related to matters of laws and ethics contributing to the health and welfare of the public. NY Board does not accept courses related to office management, risk management, leadership, marketing, accounting, financial planning, real estate, and basic CAD. Specific course topics that are on the borderline and are not acceptable by the NY Board have been noted under the course description on our website.