An existing dam at Wilderness Lodge not far away from Elliott Lake in Ontario was build some 100 years ago for wood log transportation. Now it is used to generate power using our low head turbine built out of polyurethane.
The site has about 3 m of head and 1,6 m3/sec of available flow all year round. Construction took place over a few weeks. After some calculation demonstrating that one of the water passages on that dam could be use as a water intake, the wood logs were removed and replaced with a steel structure incorporating the water intake, a gate and trashrack.
Then a 15 m long steel pipe was installed and is supported by concrete support every 5 meters. The system uses a 30-kW turbine equipped with an AC alternator for a stand-alone operation.
The system, which is governed by a Canadian- designed electronic load controller, provides generous amounts of electricity for lights and appliances, and it operates a Jacuzzi that the diesel unit could not. It provides year-round electric heated hot water for the Hotel and significant space heating in the winter. Propane is used for cooking.
The system requires little maintenance other than occasionally cleaning the intake and change gearbox oil every 5 years or so. The system has run well since it was commissioned in 1996. Replacing this system today would cost about $110,000.