How To Make A Micro Hydroelectric Power Plant

How To Make A Micro Hydroelectric Power Plant

It’s on the back of all of our minds – the zombie apocalypse is coming, and when the time comes to huddle in a bunker, what are we going to do for power? Blogger Manfred Mornhinweg has a blog series on setting up his personal paradise, and part of that includes renewable power from a nearby stream. He was nice enough to provide an abundance of photos so we all know what’s involved.

It’s actually a little harder than I would’ve thought – and I didn’t exactly think it was easy. There is probably an easier way, however. While Mornhinweg’s setup can generate around 9kW of power (though he keeps it at 4), apparently he didn’t see Gizmodo’s post about this bucket which can generate power, or this Hydrovolt – the latter of which can generate 12kW of power each.

Still, it’s an amazing self-sustenance project, and it has some nice features once underway, such as the ability to self-clean. You can check out the full post here. If you’ve ever wanted to do something similar, or just wondered what’s involved, the photographic evidence should both inspire and intimidate you.


  • Seems like a lot of expense and effort to generate some power. Wouldn’t you get more bang for your buck from solar PV?

  • Yeh plus it’s always better to have more than one source of power. This would be handy if you happened to have flowing water on your property already.

    • Exactly this. Solar itself isn’t at all without it’s problems anyway. Though they’re getting better.. They still have an extremely limited effective life in the grand scheme of things, and though people see the price coming down as a good thing because more people are getting into solar.. It’s mostly because of dramatic overproduction in China.. With potentially environmentally devastating effects.

      Alternative energy at its core needs to always be about using your specific geography to your advantage – to the level where what’s best for your neighbor might not even be what’s best for you.

      If you’re on the coast for example wind power is a great way to supplement a solar setup, and generally on the West coast will give you the largest benefits during peak energy periods 4-7pm from the sea breeze.

      In this case though i’d just be wary, as many ‘streams’ are protected waterways, and you can’t just do whatever you want with them. I’d have no idea if councils have any kind of permit or approval system for such things.

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