Three Gorges Dam Essay

700 words - 3 pages

The Three Gorges Dam is a hydroelectric dam that spans the Yangtze River by the town of Sandouping, located in Yiling District, Yichang, Hubei province, China. The Three Gorges Dam is the world's largest power station in terms of installed capacity (22,500 MW) but is second to Itaipu Dam with regard to the generation of electricity annually.
Except for a ship lift, the dam project was completed and fully functional as of July 4, 2012, when the last of the main turbines in the underground plant began production. Each main turbine has a capacity of 700 MW. The dam body was completed in 2006. Coupling the dam's 32 main turbines with two smaller generators (50 MW each) to power the plant ...view middle of the document...

In 1944, the United States Bureau of Reclamation chief design engineer, John L. Savage, surveyed the area and drew up a dam proposal for the 'Yangtze River Project'. Some 54 Chinese engineers went to the U.S. for training. The original plans called for the dam to employ a unique method for moving ships; the ships would move into locks located at the lower and upper ends of the dam and then cranes with cables would move the ships from one lock to the next. In the case of smaller water craft, groups of craft would be lifted together for efficiency. It is not known whether this solution was considered for its water-saving performance or because the engineers thought the difference in height between the river above and below the dam too great for alternative methods. Some exploration, survey, economic study, and design work was done, but the government, in the midst of the Chinese Civil War, halted work in 1947.
After the 1949 Communist takeover, Mao Zedong supported the project, but began the Gezhouba Dam project nearby...

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