The Archimedean Screw Revolution
Having been used as a pump for thousands of years, it seems amazing that only 10 years ago, the modern application of the Archimedean screw as a generating technology was as yet unknown in the UK. In 2004, our Managing Director, Dave Mann, had to travel to Germany to seek out a possible ‘fish-friendly turbine’ for one of our sites in the UK – and the idea of the Archimedean screw is what he returned with.
Given the low-head nature of the majority of our rivers, and a history of fish-protection issues preventing micro-hydro developments, the potential for this technology was immediately obvious. Mann Power became the Archimedean Screw generating specialists in the UK.
As a newcomer to British rivers, it was essential to demonstrate to environmentalists and statutory bodies that the positive results of tests carried out on undertaken by Mann Power has extremely positive implications for the economics of micro-hydro in the UK. Literally hundreds of sites – previously written-off for hydro – are being revisited for development and the cost of installation has been greatly reduced.
Most positively of all, the advent of the Archimedean screw means that fish-protection and micro-hydro need no longer be mutually exclusive.