© 2021 Elsevier LtdThe objective of the current research is to develop a novel analytical approach for the performance evaluation and optimization of a run-of-river hydropower facility. Two types of turbines, Kaplan and Francis are considered and the analysis is validated on the basis of a new hydrological model through adopting a case study approach. In the second step of the study, a sensitivity analysis was conducted to determine the optimum energy production values of the designed hydropower system. The results of the analysis have demonstrated a high energy efficiency for both Kaplan and Francis turbines. The Francis turbine has particularly outperformed the Kaplan turbine in terms of productivity and technical performance. Optimization of the energy production for each turbine concluded that with a fixed water height ranging from a minimum of 5 m up to maximum of 20 m, the highest levels of the energy production are observed when the water speed and the net head reach larger values.