Low Head turbines are hydropower turbines which have been developed for small-scale exploitation of rivers or irrigation canals. They have been developed for low water heads - below 10 metres - but large flows of water. Examples of their use in South America, Asia and Europe are given. The three types of low head turbines - crossflow turbines, kaplan turbines and propeller turbines- , and their applications, are described. Costs, suitable locations, power generated, and the special requirements of the two commercially available low head turbine models (LH1000 and PowerPal turbines) are discussed.
This resource was produced by TI-UP – a DFID-funded resource centre for technology, infrastructure and urban planning, managed by IMC Worldwide Ltd.
Urban, F. TI-UP enquiry: micro-hydropower - low head turbines. TI-UP Resource Centre, London, UK (2009) 8 pp.