Tech Notes

Issue 5 and Volume 18.

IHA publishes greenhouse gas measurement guidelines

The International Hydropower Association (IHA) has announced the availability of the first edition of its GHG Measurement Guidelines for Freshwater Reservoirs. These guidelines are intended to provide a standard for measuring greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from reservoirs.

The guidelines, a key outcome of the UNESCO/IHA GHG Status of Freshwater Reservoirs research project, were officially launched at a session held by IHA at the HydroVision International conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA.

For the first time, the guidelines provide individuals responsible for this area with a comprehensive tool to assess the GHG status of freshwater reservoirs, including definitive guidance on measurement and qualification of emissions resulting from the formation of reservoirs.

With the concept of global application being at the forefront of the development of the GHG measurement guidelines, IHA has ensured that the methodology contained within the publication is applicable to all climate types and reservoir conditions. By providing the tools required to determine net GHG emissions in a selected set of reservoirs, IHA’s intention is to ensure that the results gained will be used to develop predictive tools, thereby avoiding the necessity of such intensive field measurements in the future. It is anticipated that shared results from the use of these guidelines will contribute to this intention.

IHA’s next steps include promoting field measuring programs that comply with the proposed method, developing training programs for taking field measurements, developing predictive modeling tools to assess the GHG status of unmonitored reservoirs and potential new reservoir sites, and developing guidance and assessment tools to mitigate GHG emissions at vulnerable sites.

– To order the free pdf version or a printed version, which costs £60 (US$92), visit the IHA website: www.hydropower.org/climate_initiatives/GHG_Measurement_Guidelines.html.

Call for abstracts announced for HydroVision Brazil

HydroVision Brazil, scheduled to take place on September 20-22, 2011, at the Windsor Barra Hotel in Rio de Janeiro, is now accepting abstract submissions for the conference program.

Visit www.hydrovisionbrazil.com for a full list of topics and to submit your presentation ideas. The deadline for submissions is January 3, 2011.

A committee will review all abstracts submitted by the deadline. Abstract submitters will be notified via e-mail as to whether their proposed abstract has been selected. All manuscripts submitted for presentation at HydroVision Brazil will be included in the conference proceedings.

Attracting an international audience of key decision-makers and technical experts directly involved in the hydropower industry, HydroVision Brazil features a practical, solutions-oriented conference program and simultaneous exhibition focused on innovative technologies, future trends, and new business development.

Join this strategic platform for introducing the region’s wealth of development opportunities and expertise to the rest of the world’s hydropower market. More than 31,000 MW of new hydro projects are scheduled for completion in the country by 2017.

HydroVision Brazil is owned and produced by PennWell Corporation.

– For more information, contact Libby Smith (+1) 918-831-9560; E-mail: [email protected].

Video-based system allows mapping of cracks in dams

A new system that employs a digital video camera equipped with a telephoto lens and crack management software can be used to identify even fine cracks on concrete structures, such as the downstream face of a dam. The system was developed by Tousetsu Civil Engineering Consultant Inc.

With this system, a digital camera is mounted on a platform and used to capture 30 still images per second, says Yoshiaki Mori, president of Tousetsu Civil Engineering Consultant. Specially designed software removes the overlaps in the images and joins them to create a single still image. Engineers then examine the image on a computer screen and use a stylus pen to track any cracks or defects. The properties of each crack are automatically recorded during tracing, including width, starting and ending points, and length. Finally, the software creates a crack distribution map and displays the crack properties in an Excel spreadsheet.

A number of cracks may appear on the surface of a concrete arch dam over many years of operation. It is essential to identify any significant cracks and separate them from the many trivial cracks, Mori says. Mapping cracks before and after any impacts to the dam is valuable to precisely identify any new cracks caused by the impact. In addition, crack identification will help engineers justify if further investigation is necessary for the stability of the dam, he says.

Testing on Nagawado Dam, a 155 meter-high concrete arch dam owned by Tokyo Electric Power Co. Inc., confirmed that use of digital telephotography captures crack data for the entire downstream face of a dam, including areas that are inaccessible to personnel, Mori says. To map this dam, the camera was set at several positions downstream and controlled remotely to provide images focusing on a 75 cm-wide vertical area from the top to the bottom of the dam.

Data collected was used to produce a computerized image of the surface. These images allowed personnel to identify even very fine cracks of 0.2 mm wide.

This testing also revealed that the accuracy of the data depends on the distance between the camera and the dam, Mori says. Thus, a distance of less than 200 meters is recommended. In addition, the angle of the camera to the dam should not be too oblique (ideally less than 45 degrees).

The company has since used this system to inspect the concrete lining of the tunnel at Tokyo Electric Power’s 2,820 MW Kannagawa pumped-storage station. And Tousetsu Civil Engineering Consultant plans to apply the system to inspect two other Japanese arch dams in 2011: the 95.5 meter-high Midono Dam and 60 meter-high Inekoki Dam, both in Nagano Prefecture.

Pakistan to upgrade roller-compacted concrete testing lab

Pakistan’s Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) plans to upgrade its Central Materials Testing Laboratory for testing roller-compacted concrete.

WAPDA says it plans to hire a specialist in mass concrete and roller-compacted concrete (RCC) who has a doctorate in civil engineering or in a relevant discipline as well as a minimum of 15 years of experience in a concrete testing laboratory especially for RCC or physical testing of RCC mix trials for at least three RCC dams.

This specialist is to assist in training and upgrading of WAPDA’s Central Material Testing Laboratory for special tests of RCC.

The laboratory, established in 1986, provides for geotechnical investigations and for testing of materials such as rock, soil, cement, concrete, and asphalt.

WAPDA has been active in developing Pakistan’s infrastructure for the past 35 years. For example, the authority completed the 1,000 MW Mangla Dam project in 1967 and the 3,478 MW Tarbela Dam project in 1974. In addition, WAPDA is currently seeking to build the 4,320 MW Dasu hydro project on the Indus River.

– For more information, contact General Manager (Technical Services), (+92) 42-99203771; E-mail: [email protected]; Internet: www.wapda.gov.pk.

Book available on dam-break problems and solutions

WIT Press has announced the availability of Dam-break Problems, Solutions and Case Studies.

To manage and minimize the risk of dam failure, it is necessary to identify hazards and vulnerabilities by understanding the causes that lead to dam failures, as well as the flow propagation process, say editors D. De Wrachien and S. Mambretti. Knowledge and advance scientific tools play a role of paramount importance in coping with flooding and other dam break problems, the book says.

De Wrachien and Mambretti are professors with the State University of Milan in Italy.

This 368-page book covers a variety of topics:

– Practical aspects involved in dam failures;
– A range of laboratory tests and modeling techniques for dealing with shock waves and other disasters caused by dam failures;
– Dam break wave and flood routing;
– Dam break flow against obstacles and through river bed singularities;
– Dam break risk management and hazard mitigation;
– Economic evaluation of dams for flood protection; and,
– Case histories to illustrate the topic of disaster management.

WIT Press, in Southampton, UK, publishes engineering research.

– To order the book for US$242, E-mail: [email protected].

Emerson introduces Ovation software suite

Emerson Process Management has launched the new Ovation Documentation Builder software suite, which is designed to help power utilities meet European documentation standards.

Integrated with the Ovation control system database and configuration tools, Ovation Documentation Builder provides automatically generated project documentation as well as instrumentation and control documentation, Emerson reports.

Ovation Documentation Builder features an intuitive interface with templates and wizards to allow quick and automatic creation of drawings and layouts such as Ovation cabinet drawings, card drawings, electrical connection drawings, marshalling cabinet drawings, cabling reports, and loop diagrams.

Control system configurations, created using Ovation’s standard suite of engineering tools, are automatically matched with broader plant design and operational data. The flexible data formats allow customer- and plant-specific data for field devices and other equipment to be imported, saving time and reducing the likelihood of errors, the company says.

Ovation Documentation Builder is completely integrated within the Ovation operator environment and features intelligent navigation for efficient and simple access to target information or documentation. All drawings can be viewed in a contextual manner with a click of the mouse so that an operator can, for example, access the loop diagram of a selected tag, Emerson says.

The Revision Management feature of this software makes all changes within a project traceable and creates clearly arranged reports for management and operational purposes. Through the integration of plant and control system information, documentation is automatically updated.

Ovation Documentation Builder improves project planning and consistency and supports all of the main global standards. This is particularly useful for companies with projects across several countries, the company says.

Emerson says its Ovation expert distributed control system utilizes commercially available, off-the-shelf technology and provides a seamless interface with the most widely adopted bus standards, allowing incorporation of smart device technologies.

For more technical news, check out the Technology and Equipment tab at HydroWorld.com

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