Use of Hydraulic Dragging to Remove Sediments in Madeira River in Jirau Hydropower Project

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To build a dam with large dimension is a challenge , in special in a river with higher amount of sediments, like the Jirau Hydropower Project in Rondonia, north of Brazil, where additional efforts and innovative solutions are certainly constantly required. It’s because Madeira river shows high capacity to transport debris, silt and clay, increasing the costs to excavate canals, using conventional equipments. To mitigate the cost issue and emissions, the solution took into account the low cohesion of the silt laid up at the river bed and the high capacity of this material to be carried by hydraulic dragging. The comparative costs between the standard excavation against hydraulic dragging means a reduction of USD 12 million, effective compliance with Brazilian Federal Environment Agency , in addition to being a low carbon emission, due to the use of only 3 electric pumps to start-up the natural erosion  process.