Photo taken on Oct 30, 2011 shows the Three Gorges Dam, in Yichang, central China's Hubei Province. The water level of the Three Gorges Dam, the world's largest water control and hydropower project which spans China's Yangtze River, reached its designed full capacity of 175 meters on Sunday.[Photo/Xinhua]
YICHANG-- China's Three Gorges Dam on Sunday reached its designed highest mark, the second time for the world's largest water control and hydropower project to run at full capacity.
The water level hit 175 meters at 5 pm after storing water for nearly two months from the water level of 152 meters, said an official with the China Three Gorges Project Corporation (CTGPC), the developer of the project.
A dozen hydropower turbo-generator units started operation on Sunday, generating power capacity of 8.2 million kW, said the official.
The dam in central China's Hubei Province completed its first full-capacity test last October.
Operating at full capacity should give full play to the dam's functions of generating hydroelectric power, delivering water to the lower reaches to alleviate spring droughts, and containing water from summer flooding, as required by the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters.
The Three Gorges Project was launched in 1993 with a budget equivalent to $22.5 billion.
So far, monitoring shows the dam is operating smoothly.