Define Hydroelectricity & Hydropower | Types, advantages & disadvantiges

Hydroelectricity is the form of electricity made by generators that are pushed by the movement of water. It is usually made with dams that make to block a river to collect the water that is pumped there. When the water is released, the very high pressure behind the dam forces the water downpipes that lead to a turbine. This causes the turbine to rotate, which rotates a generator that makes electricity.



It is the application of hydropower to generate electricity. Hydroelectricity is the primary use of hydropower today. Hydroelectric power plants can use the kinetic energy of water as in the run of the river hydroelectricity. Hydroelectric plants can vary in size from small city-sized plants (micro-hydro) to large plants that supplying power to a whole country. In 2019, the five largest conventional hydroelectric power stations in the world with dams.

Hydroelectricity can also use to store potential energy between two reservoirs at different heights with pumped-storage hydroelectricity. Water is pumped up height into reservoirs during the periods of low demand to be released for the generation when demand is high or system power is low.

This method makes about one sixth of the world’s electricity. It produces less pollution than the other sources of electricity. The other forms of electricity generation with hydropower include the tidal stream generators that use energy from tidal power generated from oceans, rivers, and dams to generating electricity.



Hydro means water; Hydropower or water power is power that derived from the energy of falling or accelerating of water, which may be harnessed for useful purposes. Since earlier times, hydropower from many kinds of watermills has been used as a renewable energy source for irrigation and the operation of various machines, such domestic lifts, gristmills,  sawmills,  textile mills, trip hammers, dock cranes, and ore mills. A tromped (which produces compressed air from falling water) is sometimes used to power other machinery at a distance.

Advantages of hydroelectricity

The electricity that produce by hydropower does not harm to the environment as much as fossil fuels like oil or coal e.t.c. Hydroelectricity is very safe, powerful and does not produce any waste.

An important advantage of hydropower is its ability to be used as a peaking power plant. When the electricity demand is high, the dam stores more water. Water that has been stored in a reservoir can be released when needed, in this way energy can be made quickly.

In practice the utilization of stored water in river dams is sometimes very complicated by demands for irrigation which may occur differently with peak electrical demands.

Hydroelectricity cannot generate as long as there is a good water supply. Once the dam is built, the electricity cost is very little, no waste or pollution is produced, and electricity can be produced whenever it is needed.

Disadvantages of hydroelectricity

  1. Environmental Consequences
    The environmental consequences of hydropower are related to intercession in nature due to changed water flow, damming of water and the construction of roads and power lines.
  2. Expensive
    Building of hydropower plants in general is expensive.
  3. Droughts
    Electricity production and energy prices both are directly related to how much water is available. The drought could potentially affect this.



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