The Project: The first cleaning mechanism of it's kind in the UK

Harnessing the current of the River Calder, Kirkthorpe Weir Hydropower Station produces enough electricity for 800 homes and has gained recognition from high-profile figures such as Yvette Cooper, MP, and Deputy Chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission, Sir John Armitt.

But Yorkshire’s biggest hydroelectric project also required a speciali protective screen, designed to prevent litter, leaves and other debris from damaging the expensive equipment within the hydropower station. This would also be environmentally friendly, protecting the marine wildlife within the weir. 

In addition, the screen would need continual cleaning to remove any debris and ensure a strong flow of water to the turbines. For this, a first of it's kind cleaning mechanism would need to be designed, manufactured and installed.

The project requirements
  • Design and manufacture of cleaning mechanism

  • Installation on site by our specialist site team

  • Manufacture of protective underwater screen

  • Continued routine maintenance of mechanism

  • Specially designed to protect marine wildlife

The Solution

Design and manufacture of protective screen

A protective, corrosion-resistant screen was designed to ensure a strong flow of water to the turbines, whilst also preventing debris and other potentially damaging materials from entering the hydropower station. It was also designed with local wildlife in mind, as the gaps in the screen were made small enough to prevent fish being caught inside. The manufacture of the screen took place at Mayflower's 90,000 square foot facility in Sheffield,

The UK's first horizontal cleaning mechanism

A new and innovative design was required for this project and Mayflower's design team rose to the challenge. In addition to the protective screen, Mayflower designed a unique vertical cleaning mechanism, which wipes the protective screen clean, removing any debris and ensuring a continued flow of water to the turbines.

Specialist Site installation

Once the manufacture of the screen and mechanism was complete, Mayflower Engineering's specialist site team were on hand to begin the installation. The site team continues to visit theWeir for routine maintenance, ensuring that this unique equipment continues to protect the HydroPower Station and the Weir's marine wildlife.

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