Energy need is a primary requirement of our society. Many interests and concerns turn around this matter. It includes policy, economy, environment, etc... Renewable energy is considered to be a good alternative from fossil sources and nuclear power. Renewable sources are known as “green” because of the low impact on the Earth equilibriums. Furthermore they are not exhaustible because they utilize the ecosystem cycles. Hydroelectricity is an established technology. In most of the industrialized countries large scale hydropower has been widely exploited, but there are possibilities of growth for mini-hydro schemes. In developing countries the unexploited potential is considered to be bigger. This thesis details an analysis into various aspects of hydropower, in particular it deals with micro-hydro and pico-hydro applications. A literature review about existing plants is presented; a few cases are shown in which pico hydro plants are used for the electrification of remote communities in developing countries. A feasibility study has been carried out for a hydroelectric installation on the Arno river (Italy). Three different solutions have been proposed for the realization of the scheme. One of them is a pico hydro installation. Hypothetical benefits from the plant realization have been evaluated, together with the scenario in which this plant would operate
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