Natel Energy Q1 2020 Newsletter

January 23, 2020

Natel shipped a 35kW D055 Restoration Hydro Turbine to the Freedom Falls Hydro Project in Maine in November 2019. Prior to shipping, the turbine was subjected to a range of operating conditions on the hydraulic testing facility at Natel HQ in Alameda, CA. Field installation is now complete and the turbine is operational as of January 2020.

Natel is working with Alden Research Lab in Massachusetts and with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to test the safe fish passage capability of the RHT with both sensor fish and live testing.  In the process, this work is advancing the state of the art of knowledge about factors affecting fish survival. Two of Natel’s proposed talks about this work will be presented at HydroVision 2020 this summer and we look forward to sharing the results!

Natel’s software team, Upstream Tech, has launched HydroForecast, a software service to enable smarter operations and planning with accurate discharge and quality forecasts, anywhere on earth.  Learn more about HydroForecast and if you would like a demonstration or further information, please contact Marshall Moutenot (

Natel Energy is honored to be one of the awardees selected by the DOE for funding to advance hydropower technologies.  The grant for Small Modular Hydro will enable Natel Energy and Natural Systems Design to develop an environmentally friendly low-head generation module.  An additional grant will further design of Natel’s fish-safe RHT runner.

Alden Keefe Sampson, who leads Upstream’s engineering team, is one of the authors of a recently published paper in the AGU Journal on Upstream’s work to use machine learning to improve flow forecast predictions in ungauged basins.  Read the paper here.

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Video: Fish Protection Profile - The Center Sender

A great video explanation of the Center Sender, featuring Sterling Watson.


Natel Announces $20M Series B to Further Deploy Modern Hydropower

Breakthrough Energy Ventures leads the round with funds to support accelerated growth.


Upstream Tech Wins the NHA’s Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters Award

The NHA awarded Upstream Tech the OSAW award in the Operational Excellence category, for adding value to the hydropower industry through their unprecedented accuracy in streamflow forecasting.