Gallery: The making of Portland's new energy-producing water pipe

View photo gallery (12 photos)
Cathy Cheney | Portland Business Journal

The city of Portland is installing a new in-pipe power system designed and built by local startup Lucid Energy. Click through the gallery to learn more about the LucidPipe system.

The city of Portland is teaming up with a local startup to deploy a new kind of renewable energy system that uses municipal water pipes to generate electricity.

Lucid Energy, a cleantech firm that moved to Portland in late 2011, is testing the LucidPipe Power System with a series of pilot projects. The first LucidPipe has been up and running in Riverside, Calif, collecting data to better deploy future devices and prove that the new technology is a feasible source of renewable energy. Other projects are underway in San Antonio, Las Vegas and Israel.

Behind the scenes: Assembly of the LucidPipe Power System

Sustainable Business Oregon photographer Cathy Cheney visited Lucid Energy's assembly facility in Scappoose for a behind-the-scenes look at the Portland device — a monster section of pipe outfitted with a precision, power-generating turbine.

Once permitting is complete, the Portland device will be installed in East Portland near Southeast Powell Boulevard and 147th Street. The system is capable of generating an average of 1,000 megawatt hours of energy per year from the water flowing through the pipe, enough electricity to power some 150 homes. The Portland Water Bureau plans to use the generated power to offset its own energy use.

Lucid Energy recently tapped an Israeli crowdfunding network to raise money for future growth.

Click the image at right to see the Portland device being assembled in Scappoose.


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