Penstock & Hydropower Pipeline Analysis with PipeFlow®-Expert

Jul 16

Using PipeFlow®-Expert – For Penstocks & Hydro System Pipelines

SmallHydro’s Review of -

PipeFlow-Expert with a few Screenshots of Flow & Pressure Calculations


PipeFlow® Expert - Used to design and analyize Penstocks & Pipes In Hydro Systems.

A number of you readers have commented that you needed a better understanding of your Hydropower penstocks or hydro system pipelines. Some have remarked “that was fast” when a quick and accurate estimate was returned.

In this short review I’m letting you in on my secret, I use PipeFlow-Expert® by Daxesoft to make these initial penstock performance and energy loss design estimates.  It is a cycle of trial & re-trial to find the sweet spot for a hydro site. A design spot  between power ROI and the sites infrastructure costs. These hydro capital costs include; electric switchgear, turbine and penstock costs, etc.  Hint – the penstock and associated hardware are often one of the most expensive components in a hydro system. 

Penstocks also can pose a hidden system operational expense in lost hydro energy $ value.  When improperly designed, they can also have a long term risk to system integrity and safety issues as well.  You can see that it is vital to get the penstock design right as early as you can. Until you get the penstock and hydro turbine design nailed down the whole hydro project is at risk.

For a more detailed and accurate hydropower system penstock analysis I use the same software with a more detailed input model. The design results for this tool are amazing and the tool is quite simple to set up and operate too.  Maybe even fun, Ok I can hear you  – Now Jess don’t get carried away… ;-) 

I’ll just have to post you some videos showing how I use it.

This software has a great graphical interface with tabular data where it makes sense and a great fluid modeling and analysis engine to crank out your solutions on the double. Warnings and quick fix diagnostic pop-ups lead you to suspected areas within your proposed Penstock and pipeline designs that would cause either a very expensive failure or costly rework at a later time. PipeFlow Tools are worth gold to a hydropower system designer or site prospector.

But wait! Before you cart your Penstock over to their site, look at the special offer we have arranged for you first…

These screenshots are just a few of the many Hydro System relevant features of the PipeFlow Expert software. I chose them based on your Hydropower Penstock evaluation needs. For our current SmallHydro PipeFlow tools offer; See our Penstock Tools & Special Offers page. 

After getting our special code, visit the PipeFlow site for more details on the different Penstock & Pipeline evaluation tools.  I use these tools often while looking at overall Hydroelectric system efficiency and Hydro ROI $ optimization.  Note: Make sure you Get your SmallHydro Savings Discount coupon here first

PipeFlow® Expert is by far the Best tool I’ve used of for Penstock Pressure & Flow efficiency evaluations.   If your system is simple enough they even carry a less expensive ”Lite” version that will cover just a few pipes, valves and fittings for a real savings.

Of course everything PipeFlow makes has an instant Free download! So you should certainly try it before you buy it with this free limited capability trial version.  You’ll need to get our discount offer codes first though, to get your special SmallHydro discount savings applied later if and when you choose buy. Check with PipeFlow for all applicable terms and conditions.

Click on an image or link below to enlarge the details of the screenshot image. There are more od these features and worked examples described on PipeFlow’s site. Just get your SmallHydro Promo Code(s) first!


Pipe Flow Expert - Systems pipeline & penstock drawing tool details

Pipe Flow Expert - Systems pipeline & penstock drawing tool details


Pipe Flow System Drawing Area

Design, build, view and edit your system model with Pipe Flow Expert’s powerful and easy to use interface. The drawing area will let you define tanks, pipes, fittings, valves, pumps, components, flow controls and demands.


Hydro Turbine & Pump performace curve graph

Hydro Turbine & Pump performace curve graph


Pump Characteristics & Curve Data

Define a pump as a curve of flow versus head produced or as a fixed flow rate pump. Pumps can be saved and loaded independently to make it easy to copy and duplicate pumps as required.


Pipe Flow Expert - Unit selection window - allows custom Hydropower unit settings

Pipe Flow Expert - Unit selection window - allows custom Hydropower unit settings


Configure Pipe Flow Units

Choose the units that you want to work in for each field type. The units can all be set to metric or imperial on mass, or can be configured on an item by item basis as required.


PipeFlow Expert System Fittings database

PipeFlow Expert System Fittings database


Pipe Size & Materials Database

Choose from a database of standard pipe materials and standard pipe sizes for that material. New pipe material and size data can be added to the database as required.


PipeFlow Expert System Fittings database

PipeFlow Expert System Fittings database


Pipe Fittings Database

Choose from our database of fittings information to add fitting information onto pipes. New fittings data can be created by the user and stored in the fittings database.

Just add water!



How can we help you connect the drops?”

Your comments & questions are always welcome!

Hydro Prospector Jess

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