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Hydropower

Hydropower

We work together with our customers to achieve efficient hydropower production that also respects nature, the local environment and wildlife.

Hydropower is the single largest source of renewable energy production and energy storage worldwide. It has been the most important source of power production in Norway for over 100 years and will continue to be so in the years to come. However, the conditions for hydropower are drastically changing, which requires us to rethink how we operate, expand and upgrade hydropower plants.

To reach the climate targets, both Norway and Europe aim to introduce significant amounts of decentralised and intermittent renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind power. Future renewable energy systems also need a buffer to ensure that we still have electricity even when there is little wind or the sun is hiding behind the clouds. Hydropower can act as this buffer due to its storage capacity and flexibility, which, by extension, also makes it an enabler of future robust, cost-efficient and renewable energy systems.

We have over 40 years of experience in hydropower research, which enables us to offer cutting-edge expertise across a wide range of fields, from analyses of the power grid, market models and optimal production planning to hydrology and environmental conditions in rivers and around hydropower installations. We also investigate the interplay between hydropower production and other renewable energy sources, such as solar power and wind power, as well as new types of energy carriers, such as hydrogen. We have a particular focus on how hydropower can support other renewable energy sources through its potential for large-scale energy storage, balancing power, and system services on a national and international level, and how this can be done in a cost-effective and sustainable way.

Contact person

Knut Samdal

Knut Samdal

Research Director

Expertise

Laboratories

Projects

News

Launch of a new wiki for fish-friendly hydropower plants

Scientists from SINTEF are launching a new wiki-website that lists tools and measures available to make hydropower more fish-friendly. The project draws on the concept of environmental design, which integrates technical, economic, environmental and social aspects when developing or re-designing energy projects.

The EERA conference – 10 years of lowering Europes CO2

Nils Røkke is the Chairman of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA). This is his opening speech for the EERA 10-year anniversary. Last year, when we started to think about the EERA 10-year anniversary, the first question was whether to have an internal gathering of the EERA research community, or to celebrate it with partners and friends who have shared – and will share – this journey with us. The answer was quite immediate, and I am very pleased that today I can welcome representatives of both EERA and of the European energy research and innovation community at large.

Destination Brussels – with climate facts in his luggage

SINTEF’s climate change ambassador Nils Røkke is on his way to Brussels looking forward to a new job and new assignments. He has been appointed as Chair of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA). This in a world in which the threats posed by climate change are increasingly being portrayed as “fake news”.

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