Detailed information about our solutions, goals and challenges

Digital solutions for hydroelectric plants

D-HYDROFLEX develops digital technologies for increasing plant flexibility and sustainability. Hydropower is vital for providing water supply, irrigation, drought mitigation, and flood control while supporting the transition to a greener energy system.

Our goal

The core pillars of D-HYDROFLEX project are:

  • Digitalisation: Leveraging SCADA data to create a digital twin for hydro plants, enabling predictive maintenance and real-time monitoring. Advanced technologies like predictive analytics, neural networks, and CRISP-DM in Python aid decision support. Data privacy and cyber-resilience are ensured through the F-box security tool based on deep learning.
  • Flexibility: Enhancing hydro plant performance using digital twin technology. It optimizes energy production, detects faults early for predictive maintenance, and ensures flexibility to adapt to energy system demands. The project also explores hybridization with hydrogen storage for innovative flexibility provision, aiming to revolutionize hydro plant operations and promote new business models.
  • Sustainability: Supporting biodiversity and environmental impact monitoring. Acoustic and image cameras with respective algorithms will collect and analyse the data for fish species analysis. Turbine discharge measurement technology in Polish demo will be used for water usage understanding. Environmental indicators in Spanish demo will be used to improve regulatory compliance monitoring for hydro plant operations and environmental planning.


  • Modernization of ageing plants: Although ageing fleets already present a real challenge in several countries latest technological advancements offer the perfect opportunity to modernise them using digitalisation, AI and big data to increase plants’ efficiency, flexibility and sustainability.
  • More flexible operation: Rapid changes in electricity demand and supply patterns require quick adjustments in hydropower generation, which create the need for “smarter” plants and equipment upgrades. 
  • Mechanical stresses and operational challenges: Frequent transitions like start-ups, shutdowns and regulating movements lead to increased mechanical stresses, affecting the components’ lifespan. Pairing hydropower with energy storage systems can reduce these stresses offering increased operating range.
  • Cost-efficient plant maintenance: The need for more frequent maintenance due to off-design conditions and mechanical stresses results in increased operational costs and revenue loss due to downtime for energy production.
  • Improved sustainability strategies: Hydropower technology is among the most vulnerable to climate change with water scarcity and sedimentation posing significant challenges to the plant’s performance and profitability.

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