Hydro power

Hydro power

Unparalleled Mechanical Expertise.

 

Gracon’s hydropower division has been providing government and private owners quality hydroelectric rehabilitation services for more than 30 years. Gracon is uniquely positioned as a company large enough to compete with the massive conglomerate hydropower corporations, but small enough to avoid the layers of bureaucracy and to react quickly to changing conditions. Our team works collaboratively with owners to discover value-added solutions to improve the performance of their hydroelectric plant.

 

We provide hydroelectric construction, inspection, disassembly, rehabilitation, replacement, testing, and startup for hydroelectric units of all sizes. Gracon is also Hitachi Mitsubishi Hydro Corporation’s authorized business partner for providing OEM parts, or replacement parts, with engineering capability for possible renewal or improvement. No matter what type of hydro turbine, generator, pump, governor, or valve, our crews have the mechanical knowledge to repair or replace your equipment and improve the overall performance of your hydroelectric facility.

Hydropower is the most common renewable energy that is used today. Gracon’s hydropower division has been providing government and private owners quality hydroelectric rehabilitation and hydropower maintenance services for more than 35 years. Gracon is uniquely positioned as a company large enough to compete with the large hydropower corporations, but small enough to avoid the layers of bureaucracy and react quickly to changing conditions. Our team works collaboratively with owners to discover value-added solutions to improve the reliability of their hydroelectric plants. 

 

We provide hydropower construction, inspection, disassembly, rehabilitation, replacement, testing, and startup for hydroelectric units of all sizes. No matter what type of hydro turbine, generator, pump, governor, or valve, our crews have the mechanical knowledge to repair or replace your equipment and improve the overall performance of your hydroelectric facility.

 

hydroelectric rehabilitation

 

HYDROPOWER SERVICES

 

Hydropower Capabilities

 

According to the National Hydropower Association (NHA), of which Gracon is a member, adding generation to existing non-powered dams is one of the most efficient ways to add megawatts to the grid. Approximately 3% of dams in the US have hydropower capabilities 1. Gracon has worked on several of these projects with many different turbine types: Pelton, Francis, Kaplan, Bulb, Z-turbine, S-turbine, etc.,

“Gracon was always cooperative and worked hard with us… They did an outstanding job with a great attitude.”

~Richard Brannan, USACE

 

Hydropower Construction & Hydroelectric Rehabilitation

 

Hydroelectric systems are made up of several key components including a turbine, generator, inlet valve, governor and excitation. Gracon is commonly known for successfully rehabilitating hydropower units that increase the reliability and output of the facility.

 

The current interest in hydropower is focused on hydroelectric rehabilitating and developing new hydropower systems at existing dams. Gracon does both frequently. Only 3% of the nation’s 80,000 dams are currently generating electricity 2. Through hydroelectric rehabilitation and adding new hydropower systems, we can help to increase this green power system, increase efficiency, and increase the dam’s hydroelectric generation capacity.

 

hydropower construction

 

Common Challenges and Innovative Solutions

Years of experience in hydropower construction, along with highly trained individuals with hydro-specific backgrounds, make challenges a non-obstacle for the Gracon hydropower division. Common challenges that we have come up against and provided successful solutions for hydropower maintenance & construction to include:

 

Challenge: Significant safety concerns are in working in and around water, and on power systems.

Solution: To overcome these safety concerns, Gracon adheres to our Zero Harm Core Value and completes JHA’s for every task prior to executing work. We hold all subcontractors to the same standards, so the entire team is on the same page. In addition, we empower every employee the ability to stop work on a job if they have concerns about the safety of an activity.

 

Challenge: Specific information on existing installation is commonly insufficient or missing.

Solution: Experience, knowledge, training, and old guys with grey hair

 

Challenge: Owners often want to preserve the historical value of hydropower facilities.

Solution: During our rehabilitation project for the City of Auburn in New York, Gracon needed to keep the historical value and appearance of the existing aesthetics. To combat this challenge, we used artisan stonemasons to preserve the historical look of the walls while ensuring the structural integrity required for the new roof.

 

Challenge: Clients often have operational problems with existing equipment

Solution: Gracon performs an inspection with modern laser tracker technology that provides a baseline of existing conditions. We incorporate these readings into our plan for refurbishment and restore the machines back to operational excellence.

 

Gracon LLC can provide expertise in all aspects of hydropower rehabilitation/construction projects. With our in-house capabilities and multiple divisions at Gracon, our team can perform all aspects of a hydropower project. We will build a powerhouse, excavate the river bottom, bore a tunnel for a penstock, and install a turbine/generator and controls package. Collectively, Gracon’s team can formulate innovative solutions and execution methods.

1 Facts you should know about hydropower, National Hydro Association
2 Converting Non-Powered Dams, National Hydro Association