Itaipu Dam. Paraguay
This impressive structure – Itaipu Dam, located on the border between Brazil and Paraguay. It is located on the Parana River, the second full-flowing river of South America. The total length of the dam is 7235 m, width – 400 m and height – 196 m.
Itaipu hydroelectric power station was based on the dam – the largest in the Western Hemisphere. It takes the 2nd place in the world for the generated electric power 14 GWh. It is the main source of electricity for Brazil and Paraguay – it provides Paraguay by electricity for nearly 100% and gives a fifth of the total needs of Brazil.
In order to clear the land for construction, the flow of the river Parana was changed into a different channel. Therefore, the 150-meter channel has been done in the surrounding rocks. In 1979, when the former bed of the river has dried up, construction of the dam was started. October 13, 1982 the river was returned to its original bed. It took 14 days to fill the reservoir Itaipu, which had a depth of 100 meters. The dam of hydroelectric power station has formed a reservoir with a length of 170 km and a width of 7 to 12 km, an area of 1350 square kilometers and the volume of 29 cubic kilometers.
Initially, experts estimated the cost of construction “Itaipu” in $ 4.4 billion, but its real value was $ 15.3 billion. Let’s omit the details of the electrical characteristics of the structure. It is worth noting that in April 1991, the Itaipu Dam became the most powerful hydroelectric power station in the world! Its power would be enough to simultaneously light 120 million bulbs!
The name “Itaipu” is translated from the local Aboriginal language Guarani as “the sound of a stone”. It was taken from the nearby island.
Special excursions are organized to the Itaipu Dam, including trips from Brazil according to the visa regime facilitation. To visit dam, you should present a passport. The tour starts with a movie about the history of the construction of hydroelectric power station and its economic importance for the region. Next, you will go by bus with a guide through the territory of hydroelectric power station with stops at the observation platforms. The scale of the dam, an emergency spillway, reservoir and engineering structures are amazing!