Dara Dam the First Arch Dam

On the present day border of Syria and Turkey, during the reign of Emperor Justinian, the Byzantine Romans built an arched dam called Dara Dam, circa 550 CE. The engineering principle of the dam was curved so that the outer edge of the arch faced the water that was to be held back. By doing so, as the water pressure (weight as it rises) would compress the dams construction and push the dam securely into the banks of the river.

Date:
      550 CE
Structure:
      Dara Dam
Location:
      Syria and Turkey


Additional Information:

  • Dara Dam – Wikipedia
    The Dara Dam was a Roman arch dam at Dara in Mesopotamia (modern-day Turkey), a rare pre-modern example of this dam type. The modern identification of its site is uncertain, but may rather point to a common gravity dam.
  • Arch dam – Wikipedia
    An arch dam is a solid dam made of concrete that is curved upstream in plan.cThe arch dam is designed so that the force of the water against it, known as hydrostatic pressure, presses against the arch, compressing and strengthening the structure as it pushes into its foundation or abutments.

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