NHA presents Henwood Award to American Hydro President Selim Chacour

Selim Chacour, founder and president of American Hydro Corp., received the Dr. Kenneth Henwood Award for individual achievement during the National Hydropower Association’s 2010 Conference, held April 26-28, 2010, in Washington, D.C.

NHA established the Henwood Award in 1990 in memory of Kenneth Henwood, an NHA board member, engineer, and developer who died while working on a project in California.

Chacour is credited with revolutionizing the way runners were designed throughout the hydro turbine industry. American Hydro, founded in York, Penn., in 1986, specializes in the design and manufacture of high-performance hydro turbines and pumps and is now a leading supplier for the hydro industry.

“He was an innovator in developing and applying finite element methods to improving turbine designs,” said Leslie Eden, chair of the Henwood Selection Committee. “Finite element methods are powerful tools for finding better solutions to the complex mathematical problems inherent in turbine design.”

Chacour continued his groundbreaking work, developing a series of powerful computer codes related to the design of hydropower equipment.

“I have worked in five different countries, and there is not a single country in the world that would allow four young engineers to achieve their dream,” Chacour said. “This is the only country in the world where we could have succeeded.”

Other award winners were:
• U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash. – NHA Legislator of the Year;
• Twenty-year-old Namratha Gudemaranahalli – NHA Past President’s Scholarship Award;
• New York Power Authority – Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters (OSAW) Award for its Common Tern Habitat Improvement Project;
• Chelan County Public Utility District – OSAW Award for its Chelan River Habitat Restoration/Enhancement Project; and
• American Municipal Power – OSAW Award for its Safety Excellence Project at Belleville Dam.

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