This post is about a technology created by the company LucidEnergy in Portland, USA. The main idea is to use a energy source which is available 24/7 and does not harm the environment. One of these sources are the pipes which transport the drinking water into our houses.
Lucid Energy generated a turbine, which they can install into the drinking water pipes. As the water flows the turbine spins and therefore can generate electricity. Therefore the lights or any other device in the house could be powered by this system.
Some numbers from the website: for each turbine installed in this pipe the drop of pressure is roundabout 5 psi (~ 0,345 bar).
A picture illustrates the technology, how it works:
The rated power for a pipe with a diameter of 600 mm is given by 18 kW, while the minimum flow rate has to be 1 m³/s. More details can be taken from the website with the word 'ParameterChecklist'.
A small drawback need to be mentioned though: It only works where the water moves in the pipes due to the gravity. When pumps are needed the energy generated is not that high or even would consume more energy than they generate.
Lucid Energy made this system even more intelligent that these pipes can monitor the water stream. Therefore it is for example possible that this system can detect a leakage or the quality of the water in the pipes with sensors.