Hydraulic Turbine: Definition, Types, Working Principle, Disadvantages, PDF

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Hydraulic Turbine Definition:

Hydraulic Turbine is a device that converts the energy in a stream of fluid into mechanical energy by passing the extreme through a system of fixed and moving blades and causing the wheel to rotate.

In simple terms, the Turbine is like Power producing machines.

Water turbine was developed in the 19th Century and widely used for industrial power prior to electrical grids. This is mostly used for electric power generation. They harness clean and renewable energy sources.

Flowing water is directed on the Blades of a turbine runner, creating a force on the blades.

Since the runner is spinning, the force acts through a distance. In this way, the energy is transferred from the water flow to the turbine.

Hydraulic Turbine Classification:

1. According to the type of energy at Inlet:

  • Impulse Turbine: The energy is in the form of kinetic. e.g: Pelton wheel, Turbo wheel.
  • Reaction Turbine: The energy is in the form of both Kinetic and Pressure. e.g: Tubular, Bulb, Propeller, Francis turbine.

2. According to the direction of flow through Runner:

  • Tangential flow: water flows in a direction tangential to the path of rotational, i.e. Perpendicular to both axial and radial directions.
  • Radial outward flow e.g: Forneyron turbine.
  • Axial flow: Water flows parallel to the axis of the turbine. e.g: Girard, Jonval, Kaplan turbine.
  • Mixed flow: Water enters radially at the outer periphery and leaves axially. e.g: Modern Francis turbine.

3. According to the head under which the turbine works:

  • High head, (Impulse turbine. e.g: Pelton turbine.)
  • Medium head, (Reaction turbine. e.g: Francis turbine.)
  • Low head, (Reaction turbine. e.g: Kaplan turbine, propeller turbine.)

4. According to the specific speed of the turbine:

  • Low specific speed, (Impulse turbine. e.g: Pelton wheel.)
  • Medium-specific speed, (Reaction turbine. e.g: Francis wheel.)
  • High specific speed, (Reaction turbine. e.g: Kaplan and Propeller turbine.) 

Hydraulic Turbine Working Principle:

So, the working principle of this turbine is, according to Newton’s law, A force is directly proportional to the change in momentum. If there is any change in momentum of fluid then a force is generated.

The hydraulic turbine blades (in case of Pelton wheel) are provided against the flow of water which changes the momentum of it.

As the momentum is changing, a resulting pressure force generated which rotates the rotor or turbine.

As the change in momentum high, the force generated is high, which increases energy conversion.

So the blade or buckets are designed so that it can change the maximum momentum of the water.

This turbine is used in a hydroelectric power plant.

Hydraulic Turbine Advantages:

  1. This is a renewable energy source. The water-energy can be used again and again.
  2. This turbine having high efficiency.
  3. The running cost of the Hydraulic turbine is less as compared to other turbines.
  4. Since Dams are used. So it is used for power generation.
  5. The environmental pollution system is negligible here.
  6. This is easy to maintain.
  7. The main advantages of the Hydraulic turbine are that at the turbine place, the people can visit and come across all the main parts in detail. This is like an open system.

Hydraulic Turbine Disadvantages:

  1. The Installation or Initial cost is very high. This system or plant takes several decades to produces the profit.
  2. It can develop at only a few sites where the proper amount of water is available.