Home » July 2014: The growth of small water turbine applications

July 2014: The growth of small water turbine applications

July 2014: The growth of small water turbine applications

If the first applications of river hydroelectric turbines of medium or high power are old, applications of micro-hydropower turbines on rivers are they, recent and consecutive to incentives for renewable energy.
In contrast, marine or subsea energy applications are much more recent and except pioneer exception of French Rance tidal generation factory in 1966, the other sites are much more recent but again devoted to relatively high power..
In general, applications of tidal or marine or river micro-hydro turbines of low power below 100 kW are very recent as consecutive to the awareness of the limits of fossil fuels.
To be more precise, the first developments of  micro-hydro turbines have been initiated after the development of small wind turbines and to some extent, the echo generated by the applications of small-wind turbines  because of their presence and visibility within the universe of users has hidden the  startup of micro-hydropower turbines much less prominent and visible.
ALXION observed the first applications of alternators (or generators)  for small wind turbines from 2002 while the first applications of micro-hydro turbines were initiated from 2010 and accelerated.

To date ALXION has various applications of its  STK alternator kits integrated to micro-hydro turbines in the following areas:

turbines immersed in rivers
sea​​-wave power turbines, ie working with the energy of the wave where the movement up and down is converted into bidirectional rotary motion for the alternator
tidal turbines, also operated bidirectionally
turbines operated by underwater currents

It should be noted that all of these applications are made by using our frameless STK generators operated in direct drive without gear, which greatly facilitates the integration and increases security. In applications made ​​so far, the models used cover from 190STK4M kits to our larger models, 800STK6M. Powers are spread in a range from 3 KW to 23 KW continuous, 60 kW peak and project up to 95 KW permanent. It should be noted that different turbines of a same marine site are generally paralleled to achieve generation capacity much higher than the unit powers mentioned above.

Our customers are mainly located in the United States, Australia, Great Britain and Ireland. It is clear that those new applications are in their infancy but it is undoubtedly a promising area for the future.

The following websites can be consulted with interest:



December 2017:

ST motors: the online catalogue includes now  versions of 145ST1M, 145ST3M, 190ST1M, 190ST3M ...

March 2017:


February 2017: