ShadowPic
Hoover Dam
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Stop 2 Hoover Dam
Location: Boulder City, Nevada
Date: March 6, 2007


The Hoover Dam also known as Boulder Dam was one of the first ever concrete gravity-arch dams constructed in the United States.  Hoover Dam as it is more famously known was constructed over a five year process that stated in 1931 and ended in 1935 and is located in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River. One of the largest dams in the world, Hoover Dam is 660 feet thick (201 meters) and 726 feet tall (221 meters).

Construction of the Hoover Dam took careful consideration.  The location of the dam was chosen because of its location on the Colorado River and the endangerment of downstream farming communities. In addition to essential flood control, the dam would make it possible to expand farming irrigation and bring water to Los Angeles and other Southwest communities.

In doing the construction on the Hoover Dam, the first step was to isolate and protect the site from flooding.  To do this a horseshoe-shaped dike was set up to hold back the river water while four diversion tunnels were created, two on both the Nevada and Arizona sides to drain the river.  Besides keeping the site from flooding it was also important for the site to be dry so that the removal of the 1,500,000 yd³ (1,150,000 m³) of material so that the dam could rest on solid rock.



This image shows the upper portion of the Hoover Dam the lower portion, for all those who are confused,
is not included in this photo because it is too big. It just shows the large amount of cement that was needed
to construct the dam.

 


Lake Mead is held back by the Hoover Dam.
The boundary between the white and dark colored rock indicates the past water levels.

 

Once the dam itself was completed the power plant was all that was left to be built.  The hydroelectric power plant that is associated with Hoover Dam drains water from Lake Mead through the small openings in the power plant at 85 miles per hour (137kph) until it reaches the 17 main turbine generator combinations.  The amount of water that flows though the turbine-generator combinations allows for approximately 2,074 megawatts for power to be generated.

 


The power plant attached to the Hoover Dam generates electricity for southwestern cities.

 

This energy that is produced from the water is then sent to surrounding areas through the inclined power line towers.  When looking around Hoover Dam these inclined power line towers are visible, jetting sideways out of the canyon walls.  The power line towers are so placed so that the metallic properties in the canyon walls do not interfere with the energy flow through the power lines.  If they were not inclined the power lines would be too close and the electricity would arc between the power lines.  

 


The image above shows the power lines that are at an angle out of the side of the cliffs
so that the metallic properties do not interfere with the production and transfer of electricity.

 

 

By Shana Neumann