Elliot Cullen: Waterwheels

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  • Topic: Hydroelectricity, Hydropower, Water wheel
  • Pages : 2 (611 words )
  • Download(s) : 132
  • Published : May 9, 2013
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Elliot Cullen
Waterwheels are used for many purposes with the generation of electricity as a renewable energy option. Waterwheels are commonly installed in open channels where the flow in the channel creates the force to turn the wheel. The combination of water wheels and open channel flow is commonly used to generate electricity as hydroelectric power. The evolution of waterwheels and the knowledge of channel flow are combined to create as hydroelectricity. The first waterwheel was the Norse wheel. The Norse wheel started in the Middle East. It was based on a hand wheel, which was also used for grinding grains. It was used by turning a shaft from falling or flowing water. This wheel was built closely to the same way they are built today. They were first used for grinding wheat and pumping water to villages. A wheel with blades all around it connected to a horizontal shaft. It was believed to have been used in 4000 B.C. In 1000 B.C. a vertical shaft was introduced. Before the 1900’s water wheels where mainly used for sawmills and textile factories. It wasn’t until the idea of using them for electricity is when they use really boomed.

The Romans had the same type of water wheel and they installed it into their aqueducts. They mostly used overshot waterwheels, which is when the water ran over the top of the water wheel. The water ran down from the aqueduct and over the top of the water wheel and poured down into a storage tank of some kind. Open Channel Water Flow is very common in today’s world. For example, a river or a creek is a type of open channel water flow. There is also an irrigation ditch is a man made type of open channel flow. The ancient Roman aqueducts also are examples of open channel water flow. Water density is 1g/cc or 62 pounds per cubic foot. The forces that make the channels flow are inertia, viscosity, and most important, gravity. Hydraulics play a big role in open channel water flow. Hydraulics is a topic in applied...
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