Lake Dix

The Grande Dixence dam is monitored by means of a triangulation network consisting of concrete pillars on the dam itself and in the surrounding area. This enables comprehensive geodetic inspections to be carried out on a regular basis and any abnormal movement to be identified.

In addition to these inspections, there are 16 high-precision measuring devices that provide real-time information and automatically register any changes. All the key measurement data is continually transmitted to the operations centre in the nearby town of Sion.

The dam is monitored using a wide range of measuring equipment:

  • 7 conventional pendulums (a weighted wire suspended in the topmost gallery and held taut at the bottom of the shaft by a 150 kg weight) with 26 points for taking readings, enabling upstream-downstream and left bank-right bank displacement to be measured*
  • 3 inverted pendulums to monitor displacements of the foundations of the dam
  • 3 rockmeters to measure any settlement or lifting of the foundations of the dam
  • 16 manometers for pressure readings with measurement of infiltration rates
  • 3 vacuum meters upstream of the drainage tunnel
  • 3 water level indicators at the base of the structure and in the lower tunnel to measure water infiltration*
  • 8 piezometer tubes that measure the water pressure and water level
  • 1 geodesic measurement network

*measurements transmitted to the operations centre in Sion

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