Nambe Falls Dam°First Mechanically Prestressed Concrete Dam in U.S.

by Harold G. Arthur, (F.ASCE), Consulting Engr.; Golden, Colo.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1977, Vol. 47, Issue 11, Pg. 50-53

Document Type: Feature article


An unusual combination of a curved earth embankment, a concrete gravity thrust block, and concrete thin arch prestressed with embedded vertical flat jacks has created Nambe Falls Dam, the first mechanically prestressed arch dam in the United States. Engineering statistics, details of design and construction history, area geology and testing are presented and discussed. In particular, details of the design and operation of the hydraulically inflatable flat jacks are explored. Economic, environmental, and agricultural benefits are mentioned along with other unique features of this interesting engineering structure.

Subject Headings: Concrete dams | Arch dams | Concrete blocks | Gravity dams | Prestressing | Prestressed concrete | Earthfill dams | Hydraulic design | United States

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