Leg 8 of the Transcontinental aqueduct. A 20 mile tunnel from the White Oaks Canyon dam and pumped storage plant to the North Hammock Canyon dam and pumped storage plant.

Dam 1 is the White Oaks Canyon Lake. It has a 2000 feet wide and up to 500 feet high dam, topping out at 5,140 feet, and the lake holds a volume of up to 80,000 acre-ft of water.

White Oaks Canyon dam, 500′ high, elevation 5140′

Dam 2 dams the Pine Canyon dam. It has a 2200 feet wide and up to 240 feet high dam, topping out at 5,620 feet, and the lake holds a water volume of up to 60,000 acre-ft. Water is pumped from and released to the White Oaks Canyon lake to the Pine Canyon pumped storage via a 2 mile tunnel.

Leg 8 consists of a tunnel, starting at 4,640 feet and ending at 4140 feet. The 20 mile long tunnel will drop 40 feet as it passes under the mountain. At the 16 mile mark there will be a 460′ vertical drop.

Dam 3 dams the Kingston Canyon lake. It has a 1600 feet wide and up to 250 feet high dam, topping out at 5,210 feet, and the storage holds a volume of up to 25,000 acre-ft of water.

Dam 4 dams the Upper Hammock Canyon Reservoir. It has a 3000 feet wide and up to 500 feet high dam, topping out at 4630 feet, and the lake holds a volume of up to 25,000 acre-ft of water.

Up to now all stages have pumped water uphill. This stage both generates peak power and pumps water. Let us first take the case for pumping water, Stage 1 thru 4.

Stage 1 pumps up to 60,000 acre-ft of water during the 19 off peak hours from an average height of 5,000′ in Dam 1 to an average height of 5,500 in dam 2,a lift of 500′ This requires 1,700 MW of power.

Stage 2, the first 16 miles of the tunnel. The water flow is down to 21,500 cfs , 19 hours a day. During these 19 hours 21,500 cfs flows down the tunnel, the power generated is coming from Dam 1 with a water level of between 4980 feet and 4700 feet with an average of 4940 feet. The tunnel will slope with a 2.2 ft per mile drop.

Stage 3. 16,000 cfs of the water will be pumped up to dam 3, with an average rise from 5,000 feet to between 5200 feet and 4930 feet, (average 5120) for 19 hours, an average lift of 160 feet. This requires a total of 230 MW of power .

Stage 4.The remaining 3,500 cfs of water will be released to dam 4 with an average drop of of 200 feet will generate about 60 MW of power.

Stages 1-4 requires a net power need of 1,570 MW during the 19 off-peak hours.

Stage 5 will release up to 60,000 acre-ft of water from Dam 2 to dam 1 during the 5 peak hours, dropping 500 feet, generating 5,500 WW of power, assuming a 92% generating efficiency.

Stage 6 will release up to 25,000 acre-ft of water from dam 3 to dam 4 during the 5 peak hours, dropping an average 600feet, generating 2.700 MW of power.

What’s in it for New Mexico? This leg is very important, since it will provide up to 41 GWh daily of pumped storage electricity to the national grid, and so make it possible to stabilize the net when more solar panels are installed. The 1,570 MW of power needed for this leg will hopefully come mostly from solar and wind power

Published by

lenbilen

Retired engineer, graduated from Chalmers Technical University a long time ago with a degree in Technical Physics. Career in Aerospace, Analytical Chemistry, computer chip manufacturing and finally adjunct faculty at Pennsylvania State University, taught just one course in Computer Engineering, the Capstone Course.

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