Deschutes Valley Water District (DVWD) has nearly completed the installation of a new horizontal Francis turbine from Voith, with the unit expected to boost the facility’s performance while also reducing its utility costs.

The new Francis unit replaces an outdated double Francis machine and will be used to drive a water pump that delivers 1,500 gallons per minute out of the aquifer controlled by DVWD and is then delivered to its domestic customers. The turbine will be operated by a digital control system, also provided by Voith, to further improve its performance.

“Combining the efficiency of the new turbine with the benefits of new digital controls will result in significant cost savings for DVWD by reducing the electricity necessary for pumping at the facility,” said Daniel Olson, Sales Manager, Voith Hydro North America. “With this new turbine, DVWD is now at the forefront: demonstrating the flexibility of small hydro and how it can truly deliver measurable benefits to facilities of this size.”

“We found that replacing our non-operative double Francis machine, with a properly sized and more efficient turbine would serve our customer’s needs with regard to both resiliency and cost savings. Voith’s track record and capabilities with small hydro lined up with our requirements of expertise, support and exceptional value,” commented Joel Gehrett, General Manager at Deschutes Valley Water District. “I have been exceedingly impressed with the coordination of the Voith team to ensure proper installation of the unit, especially under our current situation where travel and onsite presence has been restricted. We will soon be commissioning the turbine with their experts onsite and anticipate everything will operate as expected.”

The turbine for DVWD is just one of the small hydro projects Voith is currently working on. An additional order includes one for Lake Byllesby Dam in Minnesota.