Green energy and clean water
Green energy project
We have done a lot of hard work to convert FunaVid to "Green" energy using both Solar and Water power. We used our pure water supply from the mountain, which is brought down by pipes and passes through a filter bed. We also use it for drinking, irrigations and to supply our neighboring community. For energy it can generate 48,000 watts a day in the dry season and more than 120,000 watts per day in the rainy season. It sounds simple enough but we found it was a very complicated business to install it and get it working. It is all now functioning, giving FunaVid reliable clean energy and independence from other, not always reliable, sources.
The pipe to bring clean water down from mountain springs being laid, and Dr. Dodson by the hydro-electricity equipment. Some of the spring water was left for wildlife on the mountain too. Photos Rick Seal 2012, and Tiiu Miller 2013.
Solar panels at FunaVid. Dr. Dodson on the right.
Bathroom supplied with clean drinking water in FunaVid tourist house. Photo Dr. Dodson 2013.
Our experiences may be helpful for anyone else contemplating such a scheme so below is a report in some detail that was written while the work was in progress.
The hydro generators
First, the two PowerSpout hydro-generators are designed for a maximum of 425 foot of head (elevation of the water source) which equals 186 psi. Our source is at 600 foot of head. This equals 270 psi. We now have to find the 425 foot elevation and build a new collection tank there out of cement to break the flow of water and give us the correct pressure. The present flow is 55 gallons per minute but we have found more springs to tap into. These will keep us above the 60 gallons per minute mark for the required 2 Kwh of electricity. We also have to get all the air out of the 7,300 feet of 4 inch pipe which runs 600 feet up the mountain. This is a challenge. We then have to position the pipe inside the Hydro-generator house to be able to line up the generators with the opening in our water tank. We then have to mount the two generators with a water tight seal. We also have to plan for two more generators for the rainy season in the mounting process. We also have to run 350 feet of 2 awg copper wire to our battery house which is next to our office.
Hydro generators and various components for both solar and hydro power. Photo Richard Seal 2011
The solar panels
We have to mount 20 solar panels (4Kwh) in a such a way that we can move them every few months to obtain the most sunlight. After this is complete, we have to mount two combiner boxes (combines 20 solar panels into one line of power output), two charge controllers and the Outback Power Inverter System. Then everything has to be wired correctly and also we have to wire in control panels to give us a constant reading on our power system.
Solar panels and power inverter. Photo Richard Seal 2011
We have been putting most of our effort into this portion of preserving the environment by using only "Clean" or "Green" energy. We plan to have the Eco Tourism house (see Eco-tourism) on this "Green" energy to better promote the environmental preservation taking place here at FUNAVID.
We are making good progress with all these works. When everything is up and running we will let you know how it works, so check back here to find out, and hopefully you will be inspired.