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A solution to ensure penstocks safety

Despite their mechanical harmfulness for hydro components, transient behaviors are not under permanent surveillance. MOTRHYS fills this gap with its transient pressure monitoring solutions.

Thanks to HYDROSURGE software developed by MOTRHYS, it is now possible to process the continuous stream of pressure data measured during each hydraulic events occurring in a hydraulic power plant. From each detected pressure transient, HYDROSURGE’s algorithms perform a precise diagnosis of the hydraulic behaviour of the pipe system. As the pressure is the main cause of the stress applied on the penstock’s structure, this diagnosis allows extracting the essential information for safety-decision-making: Are all indicators green? Or, would it be necessary to have a closer look to a particular detected issue?

The great flexibility of HYDROSURGE  enables MOTRHYS to propose a simple and efficient solution to be implemented by hydro power plant operators. This allows them to easily control dangerous phenomena that had never been continuously monitored before. This continuous monitoring requires specific skills and is very time-consuming if an automatic analysis tool is not available. With HYDROSURGE, it becomes easy and cheap to monitor transient pressure in all small hydro and large-scale hydroelectric power stations.

MOTRHYS offers two solutions for contributing to the safety issues of hydro plants


Audit of transient pressure phenomena

MOTRHYS uses  his software HYDROSURGE for carrying out an audit of pressure transients experienced by a hydro facility.

This audit is a measurement step performed as a background task during few months of the plant operation. This  transient pressure measurement needs a pressure sensor to measure pressure fluctuations in the penstock and a data disturbance recorder. The measurement period is defined in order to capture a sufficient number of events to get a global overview on the transient pressure phenomena of the hydro plant.

The audit is particularly useful in situations when the real penstock loading is not well-known, for example in the following situations:

 Spot-checked of pressure in operation

What is the real operational maximal pressure in the penstock? That is the key question, asked especially before and after a power increase of the turbine. The goal of this audit step is to measure the current level of pressure, then to detect possible unexpected over pressures due to the refurbishment.

Long term safety in operation

The audit steps can also be achieved annually in order to thoroughly analyze the pressure surges and detect any behavior change. Thanks to these data, it becomes possible to accurately identify the early faults. And thus to sustainably control the operating risk factor of the hydro facility.

Thanks to data analysis performed by HYDROSURGE, the surveillance report delivered by MOTRHYS includes information such as:



Continuous monitoring of transient phenomena


MOTRHYS provides HYDROSURGE as a permanently installed software in order to ensure real-time safety


The modular structure of HYDROSURGE enables a flexible deployment according to the requirements and customer specifications.

The HYDROSURGE software solution provides real-time key figures for assessing the penstock structure overload risk over its whole length. This information can be easily integrated with the plant SCADA system.

For hydro facilities without SCADA system, HYDROSURGE  can be a stand-alone solution. This option features a root cause module (RCM) which helps to find the equipment requiring maintenance or re-tuning.