Modular low-head run-of-river power system with fish-friendly intake

Net Head 2 m - 12 m
Discharge (per module) 1.5 - 20.5 m³/s
Power Output (per module) 20 kW - 2 MW


The Hydroshaft Power Solution (HSPS) is an innovative and sustainable concept that was developed at the Technical University of Munich. It is a low-head, run-of-river hydropower solution combining efficient power generation with providing ecological consistency for the river.


Watch this video to discover how the shaft power plant works:


By loading the video, you agree to YouTube's privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

The concept has already been applied within two commercial projects in Germany, a double-shaft implementation at Großweil, river Loisach, and a single-shaft implementation at Dietenheim, river Iller. Although these projects prove the functionality and the claimed ecological and technical advantages of the solution, it is also obvious that with conventional construction methods, it will be very difficult to enter new markets for the HSPS. The level of complexity, the amount of constructional interfaces and therefore time and cost for its implementation are too high for markets with lower returns from later operation.


Therefore, the Hydro4U partners have set the target to develop an optimised technical design of the Hydroshaft concept by turning it into a turnkey product solution and demonstrate this in Central Asia. The new design focuses on modularity and pre-fabrication to enable a fast and simple implementation also at remote sites. A large replication potential for this new solution has been identified in At-Bashi, but it is anticipated that the new design will also allow for the access to new markets all around the world.

Demonstration Site

Site & Method of selection: At-Bashy


Geo facts:


  • Country: Kyrgyz Republic
  • Region: At-Bashy District
  • River: At-Bashy
  • Site Parameters:
    • Existing Diversion weir with around 7m head and three pressure segments
    • Emergency spillway for water diversion during construction in place

The At-Bashy demonstration site is located on the At-Bashy River southeast of Naryn City in Kyrgyzstan. This site has been identified as a demonstration site for the modular Hydroshaft Power Solution, which is being developed within the Hydro4U project. With the company Orion LLC, a competent and strong investor has been found for the joint implementation of this challenging project.


The site has been selected within the first project months, after a delegation visited several sites and met with different potential local investors in Central Asia. The local conditions at this site are tailor-made for the demonstration of the innovative modular design and erection method. An existing weir with three pressure segments offers space for up to three modules with one turbine each. The fact that the weir has to be renovated anyway increases the benefit of the project. Since the weir is used for the diversion for the irrigation of the downstream cultivated areas, the NEXUS context is also to be emphasized here. Construction of facilities for upstream and downstream fish migration will increase the positive impact from project implementation at this site. These measures will bypass the only obstacle to migration in an otherwise largely untouched section of the river – corresponding positive developments on the naturally occurring fish fauna are therefore to be expected.


By the end of 2022, the essential basic design work is to be completed while simultaneously serving as documentation for the subsequent approval procedure. Provided everything proceeds normally, all the necessary permits are expected to be issued by fall 2023 and the start of construction in September 2023 is envisaged. After a necessary winter break due to the extremely low temperatures, the technical equipment in modular construction can be assembled and the plant commissioned in spring or early summer 2024. In this case, the Hydro4U consortium will have two project years left to conduct detailed monitoring and evaluation of the measures implemented.


On site challenges:


  • Continuously high flows during summer months due to snowmelt
  • High altitude
  • Extremely low temperatures in winter (down to -35 degrees Celsius
  • Remote location, access only via gravel road

Involved partners

  • Research and Planning partners involved: TUM (Lead), ILF, SJE, KJ, BOKU, IWMI, TIIAME, INBO, HSOL
  • Technology partners: GHE and MUHR
  • Local Investor: Orion LLC

Output & Impact

SOLUTION FACTSHEET of project result