Thursday, November 30, 2023

1898+1943 DeCew Falls Generating Stations

#1, 36mw: (Satellite)
#2: 144mw: (Satellite, [mapcarta])

Page 5 of brocku has a history of the power stations. Of note, this plant started in 1898. That was just 10 years after Telsa invented his "polyphase alternating current system," and just 2 years after power was transmitted 19 miles from Niagara Falls to Buffalo. 

Garett Perry posted
Power Glen Built: 1897-1998/ 1904-1905.
Builder; Messrs,Angus Mc Donald & Company. (Thorold) (1898)
Referred to as “The Cradle of Canadian Hydro Electric Industry” , the plant at DECEW made history in 1898 when it began the long-distance transmission of electricity to Hamilton, 56.3 km (35 miles away).It was built by Messrs, Angus McDonald of Thorold and was once considered the most economical plant on the continent. Additional generating units were put into service in 1900,1905,1908, and 1912 ( by then, the building housing the Power House had been enlarged twice, one of those enlargements is underway in the photo). In October 1943, a new power plant opened just to the east. The plant continues to generate power as of the Ontario Power Generation System.
Andrew Lowry: I visit that station every other year and some of the machines from the 1900s are still running in their original scroll cases.
Dave Trumble shared

Dennis DeBruler commented on Dave's share
This is making good use of the change in elevation caused by the Niagara Escarpment. Note the flight of three locks for the Welland Canal that is East and a little North of here.

I recognize the location of this "hill" as the Niagara Escarpment that the four Welland Canals had to scale with multiple locks. The first two canals went up the side of the escarpment. The fourth goes straight up it with some big locks.

This is another example of streetcars being a technology driver of electric power. 
Alex Luyckx Flickr
DeCew Generating Station
[The penstocks for the old plant are near the right edge of the photo. The two for the new plant are in the middle.]
Built in 1898, the Decew Falls plant was originally built by the Cataract Power Company of Hamilton, Ontario. It was originally built to provide power to the electric street railway in Hamilton – in those days many power developments in Niagara were intended for specific power markets – 34 miles away by transmission at 22,500 Volts (three-phase). Both the use of high voltage to transmit power that distance, as well as the use of three-phase and the relatively high frequency, are unique features of this installation. The plant was acquired by the Hydro-Electric Power Commission (now OPG) in 1930 and continues to generate power for the province on Ontario. The plant itself was expanded several times with a second station added in 1943 to help supply power for the war effort.

x y, Nov 2020, cropped

This is a reminder that early units had a horizontal axis because thrust bearings had yet to be invented.
6:08 video @ 0:59 (source

"This station transmitted power at 22,500 Volts, 66 2/3 Hz, two-phase, more than double any previously used voltage." [ethw] (Some sources specify 3-phase. Others agree with 2-phase. But some sources obviously copy&paste from other sources, so "voting" doesn't work to resolve the conflict.)

markcsele, this webpage has a detailed history and many photos
This is one of the two 72mw units in the 1943 plant. It runs with a shaft speed of 171.4rpm.
Of particular note, all of the penstocks for the #1 plant were replaced in the 21st Century.

GuideTags also has this photo, but the caption of "DeCew Falls Generating Station No. 2 - 1943," is wrong. The description is of the 1943 plant, but this photo is of the early 1900s plant with its phase 2 expansion.

The 1943 plant is the concrete box that we see on the left side of the photo below. The brick building in the middle is the end of the early 1900s plant that is the opposite of what we see in the above photo.
Jade W (Jade), May 2023

This webpage has more photos and describes the importance of electricity allowing the separation of water power from a mill's location.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Iffezheim Lock on Rhine River in Iffezheim, Germany


Beate Kristof, Sep 2008

Shipwrecks & Ships posted
[The miter gates are not only crunched, they are now at the wrong angle.]

Michl Lönnebearger commented on the above post
The day after...

Boboc Adrian commented on the above post

Piet Senf commented on the above post

Fortunately, there are two locks here so shipping can continue. But even with two locks, it looks like traffic backs up.
Piet Senf commented on the above post

Instagram has a video of the wreck, "Estimated damage is 1.5 million euros."

Photos (scroll down) of the self-propelled barge.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

1948 US-31 Drawbridge over Round Lake Channel in Charlevoix, MI

Bridge: (Bridge Hunter broke Mar 22, 2023; Historic BridgesSatellite, 115 photos)
US Coast Guard: (Satellite)

"The drawbridge is an iconic part of downtown Charlevoix. The drawbridge will open on the hour and half hour for larger watercraft. Watching the drawbridge go up and down is a highlight for visitors."

This bridge caught my eye because the leaves are almost square. Typically, they are longer than they are wide.
The width is 44' (13.4m) and the length is 111' (33.8m)/2 or 55.5' (16.9m). The total length of the bridge is 222.8' (67.9m). [HistoricBridges]
Tony Bidigare posted

Li Zhang, Sep 2019

Chris F, Jul 2023

When I was studying that Round Lake connects to the much larger Lake Charlevoix, I noticed that this is the only bridge in town. If this bridge was closed, the trip from one side of town to the other would be rather long because the crossing at Ironton is just a ferry.

And then I learned that it will have closures during the Winter of 2024. And that the MDOT detour route is even further. "From January until April, the bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. for up to 10 nights, with two weeks’ notice. Traffic will be detoured on US-31, M-66, M-32, and US-131. For as many as 12 nights, and with 48 hours’ notice, the bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic intermittently for 15-minute periods between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. The exact schedule of these expected closures has not yet been determined." [michigan]
The hospital is on the south side of the bridge.

"Repairs are planned to begin in December 2023 and run through April 2024, entailing work on the bridge’s rolling girders, which enable its lifting and closing actions. The entire rehabilitation project will include 20,000 pounds of structural steel repairs, according to MDOT officials during a recent public meeting on the project." [PetoskeyNews]

Bonus: there is a large quarry and cement plant just west of town.

Street View, Oct 2023

Monday, November 27, 2023

1886 Luis I Bridge over Douro River between Porto and Gaia, Portugal

(Satellite, 350,676 photos!!!)

Street View, Mar 2023

Highway Engineering Discoveries posted
Rami Al-Chokhachi: The bridge from Porto to Gaia. I’ve crossed it many times. Beautiful view from the bridge down to the river front on both sides.

"The imperious, double-decker metal spans of Ponte de Dom Luís I stretch across the Douro River from Porto to Villa Nova de Gaia, and were designed by Téophile Seyrig, the student of Gustave Eiffel who also drew up the plans for the nearby Donna Maria Pia Bridge. When the Dom Luís I was finished in 1886, it was the longest single-span bridge in the world at 564 feet [172m], and it supported 3,045 tons of steel in weight. The bridge marked a significant step forward in Porto’s economic growth, as before it existed, the only passages across the river were boats lashed together. Today the lower deck of the bridge carries cars while the upper level is utilized by metro Line D and has a pedestrian walkway offering views across the river."
(But this source, and others, say the Dom Luis I Bridge replaced a previous bridge.)
ulysses, this webpage has more photos
"Built in 1806, this first version of the bridge, nicknamed 'Bridge of the Boats', consisted of 20 boats linked together, and which could be separated to make way for boats sailing on the Douro River (just like one of the earlier versions of the Rialto Bridge in Venice)." This bridge was destroyed in 1809 during the second Napoleonic invasion of Portugal. "Rebuilt after the tragedy, the bridge was later replaced by the Dona Maria II Bridge, a suspension bridge built in 1843, and then again by the Dom Luís I Bridge, which still stands today."
BridgeInfo, 1 of 5 photos
"The bridge was designed by Téophile Seyrig who previously worked for Gustave Eiffel. Gustave Eiffel designed Maria Pia bridge which is also in Porto.
Construction of Luís I bridge started in 1881 and the bridge was opened in 1886. When the bridge opened with a span of 172 meters [564'], it was the largest arch bridge in the world until 1898.
In the upper deck runs Metro do Porto tram and in the lower deck is traffic."
The total length is 385m (1263'), and the height is 45m (148').

Actually, the height is 44.6m (146'). [travel, but the opening year of 1876 on that webpage is a typo. And it also specifies a height of 60m (190'). That seems to be self-contradictory.]

PortugalGetaways, this webpage has many photos

TripAdvisor has 17,369 photos.

Street View, Jul 2014

Randy Perkinson posted two photos with the comment:
These are several photos I took late last year in Porto, Portugual of the Ponte de Dom Luis I Bridge over Rio Douro.  Construction of the bridge was completed in October of 1886.
The upper deck carries light rail trains and pedestrians while the suspended lower deck, which was undergoing restoration, is for pedestrians only.
Per Wikipedia, the work was adminstered by Theophile Seyrig, who was a disciple of Gustave Eiffel.


Sunday, November 26, 2023

2008 Cable-Stayed Bridge over Pinheiros River in Sao Paulo, Brazil

(3D Satellite)

The formal name is "Octavio Frias de Oliveira."

"This X-shaped cable-stayed bridge was completed in 2008 over the Pinheiros River in São Paulo. The peak of its pylon is 452 feet [138m] high, while the bridge's total length is just shy of a mile. The most noticeable attribute of the bridge is how its two levels of traffic cross one another as they pass through the pylon. A series of 144 steel cables were used to support the structure." [SaoPauloExecutiveDrivers]
Street View, Apr 2022
Highway Engineering Discoveries posted
Ismail Binu Farah: Not Brazil it's the China bridge.
Dennis DeBruler: Ismail Binu Farah It is in downtown São Paulo, Brazil:
Highway Engineering Discoveries posted
Dennis DeBruler: It is in downtown São Paulo, Brazil:
Highway Engineering Discoveries posted

Street View, Jul 2023

Street View, Sep 2022



What caught my eye was that the pylon is so big that a trail goes through its base.

As I saw about a week earlier (Terenez Bridge in France), a curved span needs an inclined pylon to hold the cables. Since this bridge has two curved spans, the inclined pylons got combined into a "X".

"The inclination is necessary to minimize the torsional effects due to permanent loads and assure the 6 m vertical clearance between the cables and carriageway....The cables have a unique spatial arrangement due to the deck's curvature and tower inclinations. The structure has 18 pairs of cable stays in each of the four spans for 144 cables. Furthermore, steel consumption is 374,350 m (1,228,182 ft) of strand and 462 tons of steel."
"Considered by architects a great failure due to a number of reasons – from its patent ugliness to its inability to operate on an urban scale – Octavio Frias de Oliveira Bridge did succeed in what was apparently its main purpose: the endeavor of creating a global city image for São Paulo while covering up the city’s severe contradictions and conflicts. Octavio Frias de Oliveira Bridge – named after a Brazilian businessman responsible for creating one of the most influential media organizations in Brazil, the conglomerate Grupo Folha – was inaugurated on May 10th, 2008. The ceremony, attended mainly by politicians and high-profile businessmen, was accompanied by a small demonstration against the prohibition of pedestrians and bicycles on the bridge."

I noticed there are trails on both sides of the river. But how do people get from their neighborhood to those trails? On both sides of the river, an expressway is a barrier. And the east side has railroad tracks as another barrier.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

945m Počitelj Bridge and 1.2km Tunnel south of Mostar City, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bridge: (Satellite)
Tunnel: (Satellite)

This bridge and tunnel are part of a 21km (13 miles) Corridor Vc (5C) project that was supposed to be completed in 2022 for a cost of €225m. [eib]

gbmgroup drone video

Highway Engineering Discoveries posted
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bridge Construction
Semir Hrnjica: Szőke V. András South of Mostar city of river Neretva.
Dennis DeBruler: Semir Hrnjica Thanks, that was the clue I needed:

China companies breached their contract because they subcontracted too much work; it took too long to build; and the bridge has cracked. [n1info]

reddit, "2 yr. ago," accessed Nov 2023
azvirt, 3 of 9
"The Bridge Počitelj crosses Neretva river with a single, continuous, 945 m long box prestressed concrete deck. Five main spans are 147 m long, while two side spans are 105 m long (105 + 5×147 + 105 = 945m)....The cross section of the piers, designed as a hollow thin walled box, has varying geometry as a function of structural loads, both in construction as in service. Piers are 92m, 97m, 92m, 91m, 88m and 66m high, respectively." The box-girder main spans have "variable depth being minimum 3,6 m [12'] in span centers and maximum 8,0 m [26'] at piers. All piers have monolithic connection to the superstructure. Both abutments as well as piers S1 and S6, are founded on shallow foundations, while piers S2, S3, S4 and S5 are founded on Ø1500 piles (25 pieces per pier). Piles are 25m (pier S2), 35m (piers S3 and S4) and 20-23m (pier S5) long."
It is a 6-lane highway.
IRD Engineering
"It is designed as a continuous prestressed girder bridge with a main span of 147 meters, variable box cross-section and a unique construction for both carriageways, and columns monolithically connected to the span construction, which is carried out by free cantilever construction."
bnn also has this photo
Aug 8, 2023: "Počitelj Bridge’s Sturdy Framework Receives Stamp of Approval from Stakeholders"
"The meeting’s focal point was the disclosure of cracks on a specific segment — measuring 4.75 meters — out of nearly 200 segments constituting the bridge. These cracks, while concerning, were not unexpected given the intricacies of such a colossal project. The cracks emerged during the prestressing phase of the bridge’s construction, specifically on segment 15. However, as experts explained, the occurrence of such defects during ongoing construction is a known challenge, particularly considering the magnitude and complexity of the undertaking....A technical analysis illuminated the causes behind the emergence of cracks. Minor alterations in cable geometry were identified as factors contributing to increased tensile stress in the concrete structure. The intricacies of cable duct positioning during construction were shown to create forces leading to localized cracks. Such insights highlighted the need for meticulous attention to detail and precision in every stage of construction."
The article continues with more sweet words about "challenges" and cooperation, but it doesn't say anything about how they plan to fix the bridge. 

Aug 5, 2023: it cracked a month after it was connected. "The damage occurred during construction work, and protection was installed at the crack site." [SarajevoTimes] What does it mean to "protect" cracks? 

WorldHighways, Aug 21, 2023, image courtesy JP Autocesta FbiH – Bosnia and Herzegovina’s motorways agency
"A crack was discovered on a 4.75m-long segment of deck along the nearly 1km-long structure that rises 100m above the river, according to media reports. Few other details were given."

The construction "land scars" makes it easy to locate the two portals of the tunnel.
SeeNews, Oct 22, 2020, Pocitelj bridge breakthrough Source: Federation govt
Both bores are a little under 1.2km (3/4 mile).
"European Corridor Vc connects the port of Ploce in Croatia with Hungarian capital Budapest via Bosnia."
[Are they drilling and blasting or using a jackhammer to loosen the rock? They are obviously not using a Tunnel Boring Machine. Maybe they drilled and blasted the bulk of the rock, but they are using a jackhammer for the final breakthrough of the remaining thin wall of tock.]

irdeng, Jul 7, 2023
[The article contains congratulations for "excellent work in the realization of this important project," but it doesn't mention the cracks. But, looking at the dates, the cracks may have appeared just after the article was written.
This webpage has many construction photos, but they are all near the beginning of the construction.