16 December 2015

The Radyr Weir Hydroelectric scheme has recently reached a project milestone with the installation of the two Archimedes’ Screws.

Located on the River Taff in Cardiff, the aim of the project is to establish a clean and reliable source of renewable energy for Cardiff Council by harnessing the power of the River. The Archimedes screws are each roughly 4m in diameter, with a total installed capacity of 400kW.

Water will be diverted from the run of the river through an inlet channel to the turbines, situated on the eastern edge of the weir. The scheme will exploit a drop in height of roughly 3.5m and a mean flow of roughly 22m3 per second, causing the screw to rotate. The rotational energy will then be extracted by an electrical generator connected to the main shaft of the screw.

Installation was captured from above by a drone, showing the scale and complexities of the scheme which has involved extensive temporary works including bulk excavation and sheet piling.

Works are continuing on site for completion next year, including connection of the generators, installation of protective splash guards, construction of the screw house, the construction of a new fish pass and extensive landscaping around the scheme.