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A penstock or sluice gate is a type of valve for controlling water or sewerage. A Penstock valve is, in essence, a sliding door which can be operated by hand or by means of an actuator. A penstock door raises to open and allow the passage of water and lowers to isolate the flow.

A penstock is controlled by a mechanically operated spindle. The spindle can be operated automatically through the use of an actuator. This could be activated once specific set levels are reached. Therefore, removing the need for any human interaction. Penstocks also seal a pipe on all 4 sides, this is something that stoplogs are unable to do.

The term ‘penstock’ originates from the days of water mills in the 17th century. It was very common for a pond to be used to feed the water wheel and this was referred to as a ‘pen’. Timber stop logs where used to control the flow of the water onto the wheel these were called the ‘stock’.

Later, as there was a need to much more accurately control the velocity of the water. The stop logs were replaced by a single sliding gate operated by a lifting mechanism. This became known as PENSTOCK.

ACE were the first in the UK to provide stainless steel and HDPE penstocks. Alternatives to the outdated cast iron versions used in the past. It has been ACE’s philosophy to use modern materials and up to date technologies. As a result, reducing maintenance and increase asset life. This has enabled us to forge our strong position which we hold in the UK market today.

ACE regularly design bespoke penstocks for particular environments, including the use of alternative drive systems such as hydraulics and rack and pinion lift equipment. Projects such as Carrs Biscuit factory, Green Park Weir and Morpeth FAS can be found in our Projects section.


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