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Fish Pass Facilities

Fish migration

Providing engineering services for the design and implementation of project specific fish passing facilities

The development of a hydro power project must take the river systems, as well as the aquatic fauna and river uses at the planned location, into consideration.

Many facilities serve multiple purposes and therefore should take into account constraints upstream and downstream of the reservoirs. The provision of sustainable fish passing is a challenging and complex task for river managers and hydro power plant operators and requires a highly interdependent teamwork between interdisciplinary specialized professionals.

Our services

We provide engineering services for the design and implementation of fish passing facilities in the various project phases, i.e. conceptualization, feasibility, basic design, tendering and implementation. We deliver optimal and long term solutions to fish passing requirements for small, medium and large scale systems with regard to local environmental conditions, applicable legislation, local-specific requirements and NGO's recommendations.

We work together with specialized global partners to guarantee that project-specific conditions are fulfilled and offer our customers a large palette of fish passing alternatives such as:

  • Near-natural bypass channels and rock ramps
  • Vertical slot fish passes
  • Fish protection screens and barriers
  • Fish bypasses, locks and lifts
  • Fish passage spillways
  • Advice on fish friendly turbines

Our designs are based on fish swimming velocities (sustained, prolonged and burst), water depth requirements, attraction flows, species diversity (target species), fish migration cycles, biomass, substrate & sediment needs, operation times, other aquatic organisms, fish-suitable construction materials, integration into the landscape and monitoring.

ÅF supports and participates in the preparation of studies required for the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol which is a tool that promotes and improves the sustainable use of hydro power. It provides a common language that allows governments, civil society, financial institutions and the hydro power sector to discuss sustainability issues where fish migration is a key topic.


Matthias Regli

Matthias Regli

Project Director Hydro Power