Bealey’s Weir Hydropower

The Bealey family arrived in Radcliffe in 1732, operating as whitsters (bleachers) from a factory in Drumers Lane and used bleach fields close to the parish church of St. Mary’s, next to the river Irwell. Although the Drumers Lane site was close to the river, it was above the river level. The bleach works used large quantities of water for both processing and power (Bealey’s had eight water wheels in 1794) so they built a weir in 1811 further upstream on the Irwell to provide a constant head of water with long feeder or millrace.

A channel known as Bealey’s goit  was dug to carry the water the 1.4 miles (2¼ kilometres) to the factory and this can be seen today along with a Sluice Gate that is situated between the river and the Goit.

The Sluice Gate that is situated between the river and the Goit.

An Archimedean Screw Hydro turbine has been installed, commissioned and is now generating electricity at Bealey’s Weir.  An Open Compact Archimedean Screw was designed for this project. An Open Compact is a self-supporting U-shaped steel construction minimising necessary civil work on site. The generator unit is an integral part of the construction, easily accessible via a weatherproof, hinged generator cover.

The length and diameter of an Archimedean Screw will be dictated by the parameters of the particular site and are finished in the colour of your choice. All Archimedean Screws are manufactured as bespoke installations.

Open Compact Archimedean Screw

Rated at 96 kilowatts this hydro turbine is predicted to save in excess of 205 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) annually. It measures 2500mm in diameter with a length of 14m. The site has a head of 4.62m, capacity of 2910l/s and the rotation speed is 27.5rpm.

Bealey’s Weir

Mann Power Consulting Ltd., the UK based Archimedean Screw specialists designed the equipment for this project.  It  was manufactured by Landustrie based in Holland and Eco Evolution were involvd in the commissioning of the project with Mann Power Consulting.

Archimedean Screw Hydro Turbine in situ

Archimedean Screw Hydro Turbine

In comparison with most turbines the Archimedean hydropower screw makes use of an open construction and a low rotational speed. This results in a natural flow and there is no pressure build up in the entire installation. Furthermore extensive testing shows that due to the size of water chambers and the fact that there is no pressure difference fish will pass through unharmed.

The Landy hydropower screw makes use of a specially designed inlet and outlet that make the screw absolutely fish friendly. The water outlet is designed in such a way for the water (and fish) to smoothly exit the screw without splashing. This also reduces the noise that water creates.

All photographs copyright of  Eco Evolution.