There are hundreds of low head weirs and water mills still spread across the mid-western and eastern United States, the United Kingdom, and much of Europe. These sites were used for agro-processing and to operate small industrial shops for over a hundred years. The Nautilus low head designs are intended to match these existing sites and operate in open flumes. They will tap this age old but presently unused source of renewable energy to power homes and small businesses.
Most low head mill sites started with water wheels and changed to water turbines as more power and higher shaft speeds were required to drive modern machinery and generators. These turbines were installed with vertical power shafts to get equipment above flood levels in open flumes beneath the mill (see drawing). In cases where only the weir remains, simple open flumes can be built from poured concrete or vertical corrugated steel tubes.
Nautilus offers three Francis Turbine options to meet different flow and power requirements. These designs are supplied in both regulated and unregulated configurations and are specifically designed to be installed in open flumes with a head range from 1m (3ft) to a maximum of 3.7m (12ft), in power ranges from a few hundred watts to 3000 watts. This is 72kWh per day, which is enough energy to power two average U.S. Homes.
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