The penstock is controlled by a hydraulic power pack and gives information to the control system from limit switches on the gate itself.

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This information only shows whether or not the penstock is “open”, “closed” or “transit” (somewhere inbetween).

There is no information about the health of the hydraulics available to the operations staff.

To improve this a pressure sensor has been installed to monitor the Accumulator pressure. This enables real-time monitoring of the health of the system AND gives a penstock opening in metres.

The data logger uses this information and will email a member of the operations staff if there is a problem, such as

  • Gas leakage from the accumulator
  • Oil leakage
  • Penstock ram internal leakages
  • Priming valve failure or incorrect setting

The traces are derived by saving the accumulator pressure when the penstock is known to be open and when it is known to be closed. A formula is then applied using these pressures, the temperature and the actual pressure to derive the original Nitrogen pressure and the amount the penstock is open.