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Geodynamic Grounds for Hydro Power Stations Locations


Development of Scientific and Methodical Basis for Optimal Location of Hydropower Stations (HPS) Taking into Account Geodynamical Conditions and Risk of Danger Appearance of Natural and Technogenious Processes

Tech Area / Field

  • NNE-EPP/Electric Power Production/Non-Nuclear Energy
  • OBS-NAT/Natural Resources and Earth Sciences/Other Basic Sciences

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Kyrgyz National Technical University, Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek

Supporting institutes

  • Institute of Dynamics of the Geosphere, Russia, Moscow


  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory / Earth Science Division, USA, CA, Livermore\nGeological Survey of Canada, Canada, ON, Ottawa\nGeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam, Germany, Potsdam\nLawrence Livermore National Laboratory / Hazards Mitigation Center, USA, CA, Livermore

Project summary

The main purpose of the project is to work out new approaches to the selection of the most favourable places for hydropower station (HPS) construction in the canyons of mountain rivers, taking into account the geodynamics of rock massifs.

At present the basis for the choice of HPS construction in mountains is the results of economic researches taking into account morphological characteristics of dams location and water reservoir, geological data on carrying capabilities of rock foundings and canyon flanks. High risk of natural geological catastrophes (landslides, falling, etc.) in mountain regions, geodynamics of rock massifs, connected with its complicated structure, possibility of differential movement of separate blocks and relaxation of acting stresses are not considered. Different negative manifestations, which can be discovered during the construction and usage of HPS, are caused by dynamics of block structures and need additional expensive measures and actions for mass strengthening. It should be pointed out that these additional measures exclude negative consequences (unstable canyon flanks, directed seismicity) not for a very long period.

In terms of this project it is planned to work out the main principles of geodynamic situations estimation and risk in the suggested region of HPS construction, considering the peculiarities of the modern tectonic stresses field and block massif constructions on the different scale level.

Quantitative model of rock massifs relaxation processes in the condition of external and tectonic (caused by man activity) changes will be worked out.

Methodical recommendations on HPS optimal disposition in mountain canyons will be worked out on the base of the established fundamental objective laws, including:

- Construction method of co-ordinated structures of crust block models for different range level;
- Methods of estimation of deodynamical process intensity for the places planned for HPS building;
- Risk maps and maps of vulnerable to danger natural processes of different scale for HPS construction regions;
- Method of comparative analysis of geodynamic peculiarities of several alternative parts suitable for HPS building;
- Recommendations for preventing possible negative geodynamical building and usage consequences of large scale hydro centre;
- In the process of work fulfilment the classification of mining – geological and structural – tectonic conditions at Kyrgyzstan HPS will be worked out.

Conception of block–ranged buildings of real rock masses with certain level of blocks mobility, deformation characteristics of inter block spaces and possible remote echoes of geological environment on large-scale constructions will be used on the basis of scientific–methodical fundamental researches.

Unique data of nature measures, received during the nuclear underground explosions by the staff of Institute for Dynamics of Geospheres of Russian Academy of Sciences will be an experimental basis for suggested project. Such explosions are unique investigation tools both for dynamic deformations of rock mass and for the long-term consequences of geophysical environment on technogenious action.

Large scale events, wide amplitude range, a lot of sufficient instrumental observation gives the opportunity to analyse the regularities of deformation process in different levels of special laboratory and digital experiments, worked out analytical models will be used together with the results of large-scale experiments.

Results of expeditions, the main purpose of which will be registration of background and impulse microoscillations of local origin at the selected rock massif part, will become source of information on geodynamic characteristics of certain rock mass part.

Results of the work will make a great contribution in the development fundamental imagination on geodynamical processes regimes, occurring in rock mass of complicated morphological and constituent structure. Received recommendations will be used in the selection of certain places for HPS construction in mountain region of Kyrgyzstan.

Many project participants from the Kyrgyz side took an active part in the choice and dam construction of operating HPS in the Naryn river (Togtogul, Kurpsai, Tash Kumyr), experimental (Burlykia, Uch-Terek) and future HPS, which are constructed using the Power of Explosion (Kambarata #1 and #2). Naturally all of them can use their large experience in a given project.

Highly qualified specialists - geomechanical engineers of Geosphere Dynamic Institute of Russian Academy of Sciences, who have been working with questions concerning geodynamical stability of rock mass in natural condition and under external actions, will take part in the work.

A lot of specialists – project members have worked with problem dealing with geodynamical provision of underground nuclear tests in USSR, have taken part in nuclear tests at the Semipalatinsk and Novozemelsk nuclear test sites. This fact meets the requirement of ISTC aims – re-qualification of specialists, previously worked with nuclear arming.

All the project work has fundamental character and is aimed to the solving of the important applied task.

The Project consider the following questions:

- Classification of geological conditions at the working and constructing HPS in the canyons of mountain rivers of Kyrgyzstan;
- Choice of perspective canyon for HPS construction, analysis and data generalisation of seismotectonic situation in the region;
- Working out estimation principles for geodynamical characteristics of rock mass using the data of local micro seismic oscillations;
- Working out of block rock massif models on the basis of the data generalising, received after underground nuclear explosions and using the results of model experiment;
- Working out quantitative model of relaxation processes to range canyon flanks, identifying the stability level;
- Processing and analysis of the micro-seismic observation results on the selected parts of chosen canyon in Kyrgyzstan;
- Carrying out the comparative analysis of geodynamic canyon stability in order to identify the most favourable place for HPS construction considering its long-term safety exploitation;
- Working out the methodic recommendations on geodynamic place basing for HPS construction in Kyrgyzstan canyons;
- Working out the estimation methods of geological environment places using modern geoinformational technologies.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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