The Lochy Hydro Project is a 2MW scheme located at Inverlochy, just east of Dalmally and is the fourth hydro project to be developed by Gilkes Energy on the National Forest Estate managed by Forestry Commission Scotland.
A 3.4km long pipe transfers water from the intake to the powerhouse. The vertical drop, known as the 'Gross Head' of the project is 126m. The large diameter (1.4-1.5m) pipeline is made of Glass Reinforced Plastic (GRP). A Gilkes Twin Francis solution is used, operating at a design flow of 2,100 l/s. This turbine is a reaction type turbine which is optimised for medium-head, high-flow applications and provides high efficiency at peak power.
Initial feasibility work first started in 2009. Planning permission and SEPA license were received in late 2013 and construction mobilization started in February 2015. As well as being an investment partner in the project, Gilkes Energy is also the lead engineer, providing design, project management and construction supervision services. The lead civil contractor is Global Infrastructure, an experienced civil contractor based near Inverness.
The project started generating in July 2016 and was delivered on time and on budget.
See photographs above of both the construction phase and the finished project.
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