Three pre-conference workshops will take place prior to HYDRO 2023, and these can be booked during the online registration process


Sunday 15 October

Major plant owners, leading consultants and contractors in the hydro/dam profession, together with IFIs and software specialists, will take part in a seminar on the increasingly important topic of Building Information Modelling (BIM).

The aim is to address the challenges faced in implementing BIM on large projects, particularly in the context of hydropower. The seminar will encourage knowledge-sharing among industry

professionals, to overcome barriers such as variations in skillsets and misalignment of ambitions across the supply chain, and ultimately to maximize the benefits BIM can bring to projects.

The seminar discussions will focus on key industry topics, including digital co-ordination, interface management, digital ground risk management, and effective change management. Through presentations, panel discussions and interactive tools, the goal is to enhance understanding, encourage dialogue, and drive positive change and advances in the field of BIM, in relation to hydro.

Four sessions are planned, covering:

Session 1: Setting the scene

• Introductory talks for those who are not experts in the subject, starting with some basics of the technology and its scope.

• Discussions on the potential and future role of BIM, highlighting specific advantages and project benefits for our profession.

Session 2: BIM in action, with perspectives from:

• Owners, including PowerChina, NEA and others to be announced.

• Consultants, such as Mott MacDonald, Tractebel, Multiconsult…

• Contractors’ experience.

• Software providers, including Autodesk, Bentley, and others.

Session 3: BIM into the future

• Panel session with owners, consultants, contractors and software

providers on successes, challenges, training needs, raising awareness of the capability of BIM, etc.

Session 4: Discussion

Open discussion and Q&A with all participants on the prospects, challenges, sharing of experience, and the way forward.

Note: Places will be limited to 150, so those wishing to attend should apply for a place at the time of registration.

Those applying to join the seminar should have experience or expertise in the use of BIM, or a desire to learn


Sunday 15 October

The role of pumped storage has never been as important as the present time, as more intermittent renewable energy resources, such as solar and wind power are exploited. At least 35 nations have pumped-storage schemes under construction, and others have major projects planned for the coming years.

Innovative approaches are being adopted, such as the repurposing of disused mines, the use of seawater, and underground pumped hydro, where power caverns are located deep underground.

There have been corresponding developments in pump-turbined in recent years.

The pioneering countries for large-scale pumped-storage schemes, such as China, India, the USA, Korea and others are continuing with future programmes, while many countries throughout the world are embarking on programmes of pumped storage

development for the first time. This makes it timely for an exchange of experience not only across borders, but between experts from the various engineering disciplines involved.

Renowned experts from Europe (IHE-Delft, EPFL and others) will present talks and encourage discussions and questions.

The programme will be structured around four main aspects:

Session 1: Role and benefits

• Why we need pump-storage powerplants in grid (storage, regulation, integration of renewables).

Session 2: Civil works

• Design of components of the system, especially caverns and power waterways.

Session 3: E&M equipment

• Selection, design and innovation (synchronous and asynchronous generators, full convertors, hydraulical short circuit).

Session 4: New developments

• The use of existing mines, pumped storage with salt water, pumped storage on islands, low head plants, and so on).


Sunday 15 October

Many factors are considered in the design and construction of an optimal hydro project. All parts of a scheme are interrelated and interdependent. Alter one component, and others will be affected.

This workshop, following successful ones held in Vientiane, Montreux, Marrakech, Seville, Danang, Gdansk, Namibia, Porto and Strasbourg, is aimed at people who are, or will be, involved in hydropower development as part of rural electrification programmes. It will cover run-of-river hydro projects in the ‘pico’ to ‘mini’ range (1 kW to 1 MW capacity).

As this is a diverse form of energy production, there are always areas which are unfamiliar to people, despite many individual specialisms. This workshop aims to fill in the gaps, and help people to gain a good basic grounding in the topic. The workshop will be led by Prof D. Williams and G. Black, of Learning Hydro, UK.

All relevant aspects will be covered, from rainfall and hydrology to energy evaluation, including:

• Analysis of scheme location and definition of potential catchments

• Turning rainfall into an available flow range from a catchment and development of a flow duration curve

• Power and energy generation calculation

• Intake structures, channel and/or pipeline routes and sizing

• Powerhouse design and equipment

• Turbine selection

• Generator, controls and switchgear options

• Grids, national and local.

This will be a practical ‘hands-on’ workshop, which will guide the participants, working in groups, to develop an actual hydropower project design during the day. After presentations on the individual scheme aspects, the groups will put together the components of the project. This will follow through to the completed design.

HYDRO 2023

  • 16-18 October 2023
  • The EICC, Edinburgh, Scotland