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Zipingpu Dam in China

156m high Zipingpu dam was completed and put into operation in 2006. The Project with a storage capacity of 1.112 billion m3 is mainly for flood control, water supply and power generation. The Wenchuan Strong Earthquake on May 12th, 2008 with a magnitude of 8 in Richter scales shocked the whole world. Zipingpu project at only 17km away from the epicenter suffered great damages. However, the dam had withstood the serious test of strong earthquake, becoming the first higher than 100-m CFRD experiencing Magnitude-8 strong earthquake and maintaining safety in the world.

After the earthquake, a series of emergency measures were adopted to ensure the safe operation of the project. About 10 minutes after the earthquake, idling units have been opened to provide emergency water supply to the lower reaches. The bottom outlets and sediment flushing holes were emergently repaired and began to release water in 28 hours after the earthquake to decrease reservoir water level to ensure the safety of the dam. The power station was repaired and started generation in 5 days to supply electricity to the earthquake disastrous areas.

The safety of Zipingpu Dam assured the confidence of more than 10 million people living downstream and guaranteed the water and electricity supply during the post-disaster period. A rescue transportation route on the reservoir has been formed, which had played an irreplaceable role in timely shipping rescue team and materials into and evacuating people from the earthquake-stricken areas.

The survival of Zipingpu dam means the design, the construction and the maintenance at all levels were correctly organized. The lessons and experience from this project will provide an excellent reference for dam engineers in seismic areas of the world.

The project is owned by Sichuan Zipingpu Development Co., Ltd.

(Publish Time: 2010-04-07 15:27)

Chinese National Committee on Large Dams   Room 1260, IWHR Building A, A1 Fuxing Rd., Beijing 100038, P.R. China Tel: +86-10-68435228 Fax: +86-10-68712208
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