Question #a85e9

1 Answer
Dec 9, 2017

This is an unusual question...


If you mean how long does it take for an HEP station to come online and get up to full power it is exceptionally fast. You can be generating GW (billions of Watts) within a minute (compared to typical start up times of 8 - 10 hours for a coal-fired power station.)

If you mean how long does it take for the reserve of water behind a dam to fill up, there isn’t a typical time, but it would be measured in months, possibly years for the largest installations. Bear in mind that modern systems may be run-of-river installations that will again take less than a minute to power up.

This fast response makes HEP extremely useful for (a) re-starting the grid when voltage levels may vary wildly requiring a very quick response from the generators (b) producing power quickly at periods of rapidly fluctuating demand (the ad. break in popular TV programmes is often cited) when again voltage levels may fall rapidly.