Geotechnical Aspects of the Underground Excavations at the Kemano Completion Project

by John P. Sollo, Bechtel Corp, San Francisco, United States,
Paul MacLatchy, Bechtel Corp, San Francisco, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Waterpower '91: A New View of Hydro Resources


The Kemano Completion Project is the addition of four generators of 540 MW installed capacity to an existing eight-unit underground hydroelectric generating station owned and operated by Alcan Smelters and Chemicals Limited in northern British Columbia. All of the underground excavations for the powerhouse, transformer chamber, and associated tunnels are in the granodiorites and quartz diorites of the Dubose Stock. Rock support for the tunnels and underground excavations consisted of resin and cement grouted, tensioned rockbolts and rock anchors of varying lengths and sizes, and fiber-reinforced shotcrete. A seismic blast monitoring program was carried out during excavation of the powerhouse and transformer chamber. Blast vibration data was collected to develop the site specific relationships between scaled distance, peak particle velocity, and blast design. The program was designed to predict and control blast vibration levels to prevent damage to the electrical relays and structural components of the nearby Kemano Powerhouse which remained operational during construction.

Subject Headings: Underground structures | Rocks | Geotechnical engineering | Tunnels | Particle velocity | Hydro power | Underground construction | Power plants | British Columbia | Canada

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