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Photographer's Note

The upstream hydro-energetic development of Raul Mare river includes an dumped rock-fill dam which accumulates a water volume of 225 million cubic meters, a pressure tunnel for the transport of water to the Retezat underground hydro-electric power plant with an installed power of 335 MW and a return power plant, the Clopotiva Power Plant (14 MW).

The works began in 1975.
The dam has a height of 168 m, and it is built of local materials: rock, filter and argyle.
The evacuation of high waters is made through 2 discharge openings (the bottom opening and the semi-bottom opening) as well as through the high water wasteway that is located on the right side of the dam. All evacuators sum up a capacity of 1,700 cubic meters/second.

The main discharge ensures the transport of water from the Gura Apelor dam to the Retezat underground power plant through a pressure tunnel with a length of 18,432 m, excavated to a diameter ranging between 5.5 and 6 m, and a final section of 4.9 m (interior concreted diameter). The excavation of the tunnel was made by classic technologies (explosives, material evacuation and sustaining) as well as by means of drilling technologies in full section using a Robbins machine (section diameter of 5.5 m). This machine was used for half of the tunnel's length.

The concretion of the main culvert was done step-by-step, completely mechanized, using stepping casing and piston concrete pumps. The water transported through the main culvert fall on the turbines of the underground power plant by means of a pressure tunnel.

The Retezat power plant is located in an underground cavern that was excavated in the rock and has the following dimensions: 65 m long, 16 m wide and 44.2 m high. The plant is equipped with 2 Francis turbines of 165.5 MW power each. Another power plant with a capacity of 14 MW was built on the Retezat power plant offtake.The Raul Mare Retezat development was put into service in 1986 when it as connected to the national energetic system.

The production capacity of this power plant is of 629.5 GWh/year. At present, the development is completed with a secondary culvert with a total length of 30 km and an application of 30% obtained by capture of 8 affluents and having as final effect the increase of the capacity with 75 GWh/year.

The most important rivers captured by the secondary culvert are: Barbat river, Alb river, Parosi 1, Parosi 2 and Rausor.

The main statistical data for the works made at the Gura Apelor dam:
Surface excavations: 1,912,200 cubic meters;
Underground excavations: 18,600 cubic meters;
Fills in the dam body: 10,254,000 cubic meters;
Concretes: 53,600 cubic meters;
Injections: 62,000 m.

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