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Iowa Dam Adds Hydroelectric Power Generation

March 17, 2021

Current View

ENR Midwest discusses the addition of a new hydroelectric power-generating facility with Stantec’s Rachael Bisnett

The Red Rock Hydroelectric Plant near Pella, Iowa, was commissioned late last year adding a new hydroelectric power-generating facility to an existing flood control dam that previously had no generation capacity. This six-year, $400-million retrofit the existing dam provides power for up 18,000 homes in the area. ENR Midwest reached out to Stantec, the owner’s engineer and designer-of-record, with some questions.

Rachael Bisnett, senior associate out of the Charlotte, NC office explained the penstock design “The original concept included three concrete penstocks, which are large diameter water-conveyance conduits… After review, the plan was revised to two larger penstocks, each centered within one of the concrete gravity dam monoliths. This change maximized the concrete cover relative to the monolith joints and reduced the width of the intake structure.”

  • Rachael Bisnett

    Rachael leads dam modification projects with a focus on risk informed decision-making—as a geotechnical engineer with domestic and international hydroelectric project experience, she specializes in performing risk analyses to assess dam safety.

    Contact Rachael
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