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Hydro-electric opportunity tested this week

22nd June 2007 @ 7:07am – by Audlem Webteam
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DerwentHydro, a company that specializes in small-scale hydro-electric schemes, visited the village this week to see if there was any opportunity to generate 'green' electricity using the Shropshire Union Canal's water. There is normally a strong flow down the sluice gates to the side of the lock gates and in all, a 93ft, or 30m, drop over the run of 15 locks. The idea has been discussed with British Waterways and a grant was obtained from an Environmental Trust to pay for the feasibility study.

John and Ollie, of DerwentHydro walked the length of the lock system, measuring locks, calculating volumes of water, making initial estimates and creating interest amongst the many narrowboat crews negotiating the locks. One crewmember even turned out to be an expert in tidal turbines. DerwentHydro will now see if a scheme would be feasible that doesn't affect the lock system and whether it would generate enough electricity to make any investment worthwhile. More when we receive their report.

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