Dam Safety and Security

ASDSO awards two scholarships for dam safety work

The Association of State Dam Safety Officials has selected Jamie Bond and Emily Keck as the recipients of its 2014-15 Senior Undergraduate Scholarship.

The ASDSO scholarship program, now in its 23rd year, awards up to US$10,000 to students “enrolled in accredited programs in engineering or related fields” who are “planning careers related to the design, construction, or operation of dams.”

The winning applications were selected from a pool of 34, ASDSO said, with Bond and Keck each receiving a $5,000 scholarship for the 2014-15 academic year, a complimentary association student membership and free registration to ASDSO’s annual conference in September.

“All of this year’s candidates were highly qualified, but we were especially impressed by Jamie and Emily’s dam safety-related activities, as well as their impressive academic standing,” ASDSO scholarship chairman John Moyle said.

Bond is a senior majoring in civil engineering at the Oregon Institute of Technology (OIT). She currently assists with levee inspections for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Walla Walla District, in addition to participating with OIT’s steel bridge competition team. She is also a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers and has worked on increasing membership for OIT’s student chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers.

Keck is a senior at Rowan University, majoring in civil and environmental engineering. She has recently worked for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Bureau of Dam Safety and Flood Control, where she reviewed engineering reports and assisted with inspections. Keck is a member of the American Society of Engineers, Engineers Without Borders and The Society of Women Engineers.

Corps awards contracts for work at Garrison Dam, Big Bend Dam

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has awarded a US$1.3 million contract to Kovilic Construction Co. Inc. for rehab and repair work at the 517.8-MW Garrison Dam in North Dakota.

The Corps’ Omaha District solicited bids for the work in April, which includes the demolition and replacement of spillway chute slab and stilling basin concrete, as well as joint and sub-drain repairs.

USACE’s tender said Kovilic is to replace about 3,400 square feet of minimum-6-inch-deep concrete on the spillway of Garrison Dam, on the Missouri River. Optional work will include removal and replacement of another 8,200 square feet, repairs to 230 linear feet of cast-in-place pipe, rehabilitation and sealing of nearly 13,000 linear feet of concrete contraction and construction joints, and about 300 square feet of spall and patch repairs by hydro-demolition.

The Corps also awarded a US$559,000 contract to Emagineered Solutions Inc. for remedial waterstop repairs in the upstream monolith joints at the 494.3-MW Big Bend hydroelectric project.

The Corps’ Omaha District most recently solicited bids for the work in May, which include construction management and installations services for drilling and installing new waterstops in upstream monolith joints 3/4 and 5/6 of the Big Bend powerhouse.

Per the tender, Emagineered Solutions is to coordinate with the waterstop system developer and provide concrete drilling, video inspection and installation services to replace the existing system with a new joint system to prevent water from flowing on or under the generator equipment floor.

The Corps took bids in 2013 for spillway dike bank stabilization at Old Fort Thompson at the Big Bend project, which began operation in 1952 near Fort Thompson, S.D. The agency awarded contracts in 2012 to J.F. Brennan Co. Inc. for rehabilitation of spillway gates and to Brunow Contracting LLC for dam embankment repairs at Big Bend. The Corps also took bids in 2010 to replace waterstop materials and bladders at Big Bend.

Grant PUD updates status of Wanapum Dam repairs

Contractors are working around the clock in preparation for final reinforcing repairs of a cracked Wanapum Dam spillway, operator Grant County Public Utility District said.

“Various types of drilling” are already under way as Grant PUD awaits approval for further repairs from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which will include the installation of high-strength cables being installed from the top of the dam into bedrock below. The repairs will also likely include additional reinforcing anchor bars in the upstream and downstream sides of the spillway, Grant PUD said.

All of the repairs in the US$61 million project were scheduled to take place over the summer, allowing Grant PUD to restore the rivers elevation during the fourth quarter of this year.

The company also said fish passage modifications to both of Wanapum Dam’s ladders have “proven effective,” with more than 23,500 adult Chinook having migrated upstream successfully. Spiral flumes have also been added to existing fish ladders in anticipation of record-breaking sockeye, and summer and fall Chinook runs.

A 38-mile stretch of shoreline from above Wanapum Dam to below Rock Island Dam will remain closed as a public safety precaution and to protect culturally-sensitive sites, Grant PUD said, until repairs at Wanapum are in place.

“While there may be some portions of the shoreline that appear safe, the velocity of water moving through the narrow river channel, and sandy banks creates hazardous conditions for the public,” Grant PUD said in a release. “Recreation sites below Wanapum Dam continue to provide recreation opportunities throughout the summer months.”

Grant PUD released a preliminary report on the Wanapum Dam fracture in May, which said a 65-foot long by 2-inch-wide horizontal crack in the structure’s pier monolith No. 4 was caused by a mathematical error in the dam’s original design calculations.

The discovery led Grant PUD to begin a drawdown of waters upstream of the structure, lowering their levels by more than 25 feet.

The dam is also home to a 1,038-MW Wanapum hydroelectric plant. Grant PUD the plant is only producing about half the electricity it would under normal river conditions.

The facility is a sister plant to the Priest Rapids project. Combined, the two have an output capacity of nearly 2,000 MW.

Spillway, dam core drilling to be performed at Seven Sisters

Canadian utility Manitoba Hydro plans to hire a company to perform core drilling on the spillway and concrete dam of the 165-MW Seven Sisters hydroelectric project in Manitoba.

Seven Sisters was built in 1952 on the Winnipeg River and includes six generating units.

Manitoba Hydro is seeking a company to perform diamond core drilling to recover a 6-inch-diameter, 10-foot-long horizontal concrete core from eight locations of the downstream rollway of the spillways, as well as a 2.5-inch-diameter, 65-foot-long vertical concrete and rock foundation core from two locations on the deck of the south non-overflow dam. Other work includes additional core drilling and inspection and testing of the cored holes. The work is to be completed by October 2014.

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