World’s only ice dam being built in Khatanga seaport

World’s only ice dam being built in Khatanga seaport

November 16, 2020

The construction will save the fleet assigned to the port from the spring flood.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. #THIS IS TAIMYR. The Khatanga sea trade port, where the necessary equipment is unloaded and loaded during the northern delivery to the villages of Taimyr, is located on the right bank of the Khatanga river. When the river breaks open in the spring and the ice drift begins to break and destroy everything in its path, this ice sheet, located perpendicular to the coast, serves as a reliable protection for the fleet wintering in the port.

The miracle of cryotechnology is being built by two people under the supervision of an engineer, the Khatanga seaport told This Is Taimyr. The dimensions of the structure are 27 meters wide, 200 meters long, 10 meters high.

Filling and freezing of the ice dam is done from the beginning of November to March. Water is pumped into the erected formwork by pumps in small portions, based on the ice height of five centimeters. When the first layer is firmly frozen, the process is repeated. And this happens continuously for five months. During this time, thousands of tons of water are pumped over to build an artificial iceberg. Work is carried out in the most severe frosts: the harder it is, the more reliable the structure is. Now the first centimeters of the unique dam are being poured and frozen. Along the way, wooden pillars, used for mooring ships, will be frozen into the artificial iceberg.

For the first time an ice dam was erected in Khatanga in 1939. As there is no convenient backwater on the river where the fleet could hide from the force of the spring ice drift. Another and very important reason is that in the conditions of the Far North, the construction of capital and complex hydraulic structures will require huge costs for construction materials and their delivery.

When the river opens and the ice drift begins to break and destroy everything in its path, a 200-meter ice sheet with a width of almost 30 meters will take the blow and protect the ships of the Khatanga seaport that take refuge behind it. Cryotechnology knows many other structures built with the help of ice, for example, freezing it for temporary passage through swamps, erecting ice pontoons across lakes and large rivers, but the Khatanga ice dam is the only one of its kind today.

Text: Tatiana Rychkova, Photo: open sources

November 16, 2020

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