I am leading a new team of 10 engineering students and one faculty colleague back to Honduras next week. Lord willing, we will be installing a hydro electric generator in a new orphanage called Promise Home, near El Progresso. (See http://promisehome.org/ from where I borrowed the very cool logo. The white part in the hand is in the shape of Honduras, and the five stars are in Honduran flag.)
They already have a long section of PVC pipe (called a penstock) that brings water in from the nearby river. They also have already built a power house for our generating equipment. Below you see the inside of the power house. There are three pipes coming in from the river. The one on the left is 6" in diameter, the other two are 8". For the next year or two, we will only use the smaller one. After the water flows through the generator, it exits the power house via the concrete "bathtub" in the floor. There are two large drain pipes there that bring the water back to the river, downstream from our inlet.
This is the outside of the power house. You can see the 6" pipe running off to the river. The last image is a model of our "Pelton Runner" which is the water wheel gizmo that serves as the interface between our generator and the actual jets of water. Lance did a good job on this.
More posts about our trip coming soon!