First Fully Licensed, US Hydrokinetic Power Project Underway In Hastings Minnesota

hydrokinetic generator hastings minnesota photo

Site of City of Hastings, MN owned and operated, 4.4-MW hydropower project at USAE Lock & Dam No. 2
Image credit:Hydro Green Energy, excerpted

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued its first full license for an in-stream hydro-kinetic power project. The project will be located on the Mississippi River, in the output channel of a hydro-power dam operated by the City of Hastings, Minnesota (as pictured). Via:FM Link, Facilities Management News, FERC approves first in-stream hydrokinetic project

Hydro Green Energy will provide two, 100kW turbines, giving a 70-kilowatt boost in to a pre-existing 4.4-megawatt Mississippi River hydro-power facility. Hence, the permit is really an amendment to the existing license. Details are presented below.Below is a shot of one of the two turbines, as assembled (in the USA), during the fall of 2008.

hydro green turbine assembly hastings minnesota 2008 photo

Image credit:Hydro Green Energy, pdf file

The two turbines will be suspended from a barge, which is cable held in the tail water of an existing dam. The turbines will drive their respective generators, which are mounted atop the barge. A license requirement, should adverse environmental impacts occur, is for the city to modify operations or remove the turbines or generator barge.

FERC outlines the hydro-kinetic facility permitting process here.

Because this will the the first such operating facility, it will be scrutinized for impacts, on spawning fish particularly. The important native species include the shovelnose sturgeon, paddlefish, walleye, and sauger. (They can chop up all the asian carp they want to and people will cheer.)

Previous TreeHugger coverage of hydrokinetic or "run of river" projects.
Hydro Green Energy Plans Two, 70-megawatt, Current-Based ...
Grays Harbor Ocean Energy Stakes US FERC Claim For Billions Worth ...
1000 Megawatts of Run-of-River Hydro on Tap for British Columbia ....

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