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Three Gorges super ship lift boosts efficiency, safety

By Yang Ziman and Hu Yuanyuan in Yichang, Hubei | China Daily | Updated: 2016-11-24 08:03

The massive new ship lift being used at the Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze River, the biggest and highest one in the world, has greatly boosted efficiency and safety for ships going through the dam, said the head of its operations.

The ship lift, which began functioning in September, can elevate vessels up to 3,000 metric tons up or down a vertical distance of 113 meters. The ship chamber itself has a pool of water 120 meters long by 18 meters wide and 3.5 meters deep. The lift was built to accommodate mostly small and medium-sized vessels, with bigger ships still using the dam's adjacent five-tiered lock system to navigate the waterway.

"It only takes about 40 minutes for a ship to go through the dam compared with around three hours in the past," said Wu Xiaoyun, director of the ship lifter program and chief of the electromechanical engineering bureau of China Three Gorges Corp.

Three Gorges super ship lift boosts efficiency, safety

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