Our micro-hydro scheme powers a 75kW turbine, which is situated by the main road at Tighchuig. The water intake is above the treeline to the north-west of the log cabin village, 190 metres above the turbine. Not all the water is abstracted from the burn as a residual flow needs to be maintained at all times for the wildlife living in it.
Eagle Brae conducted surveys in consultation with the local fishery board to ensure water was not abstracted from any stretches of the burn used by migrating fish. Fortunately there is a series of steep falls immediately above the turbine site, which means fish are not able to reach these parts. Almost all the electricity generated is used on site to power domestic demand and hot water in the cabins.
Many people believe the water gushes furiously down the pipes of hydro schemes, smashing into the turbine. This is not true - the entire pipe length is full of water at all times with the pressure alone forcing the water through a jet much smaller than the pipeline width. With all the pipework buried underground, our micro-hydro scheme is un-obtrusive to both guests and the wildlife. The only visible element is the small intake weir and the turbine house, three walls of which are set into the hillside. We have made a foot-path up to the weir intake for any guests interested in having a look.