Largest Dams in the world by Installed Capacity
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  Overview

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) refers to capacity as the maximum output of electricity that a generator can produce under ideal conditions.

Three Gorges Dam of China is the largest dam by installed capacity in the world, built with a capacty of 22,500 MW. At second and third, are Itaipu Dam with a capacity of 14,000 MW and Xiluodu Dam at 13,860 MW.The installed capacities of major dams in the world range from 3 MW to 22,500 MW, with the average dam installed with a capacity of 2,489.1 MW.

 Compare Three Gorges Dam with Changheba Dam


  Interactive Chart

Chart 1: Largest Dams in the World by Installed Capacity
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  Top 30 ranks, by installed capacity in descending order ( rank and segment full dataset - 113 items )

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Here are the largest dams by installed capacity in the world.

Three Gorges Dam.

Amazing aerial view: World's largest shiplift at Three Gorges Dam (credit: Youtube/New China TV)

Three Gorges Dam is located in Sandouping, Yiling District, Hubei, China (Asia). The gravity dam was completed in 2008 (14 years old).

Three Gorges Dam is the largest hydroelectric dam in the world by installed capacity. The structural height of Three Gorges Dam is 181 meters while its structural volume of 27.40 million m3. The gravity dam can hold up to 39.30 billion m3 of water and has an installed capacity of 22,500MW.

 

 Compare Three Gorges Dam with Boyabat Dam from Turkey.

 Compare Three Gorges Dam with Belo Monte Dam from Brazil.


Itaipu Dam.

Itaipù Dam: the world's largest generator of renewable clean energy (credit: Youtube/Total)

Itaipu Dam is located in Foz do Iguaçu and Hernandarias, Brazil-Paraguay (South America). The buttress dam was completed in 1984 (38 years old).

Itaipu Dam is the 2nd largest hydroelectric dam in the world by installed capacity. The structural height of Itaipu Dam is 196 meters while its structural volume of 12.30 million m3. The buttress dam can hold up to 29 billion m3 of water and has an installed capacity of 14,000MW.

 

 Compare Itaipu Dam with Daniel-Johnson Dam from Canada.


Xiluodu Dam.

China's 2nd-largest Hydropower Station Wins Global Recognition (credit: Youtube/ CCTV Video News Agency)

Xiluodu Dam is a 9-year-old arch dam (completed in 2013). It is located in Sichuan province, China (Asia).

Xiluodu Dam is the 3rd largest hydroelectric dam in the world by installed capacity. The arch dam has an installed capacity of 13,860MW. Xiluodu Dam stands 285.50 meters tall and can impound up to 12.67 billion m3 of water.

 

 Compare Xiluodu Dam with Karun-3 Dam from Iran.

 Compare Xiluodu Dam with Karun-4 Dam from Iran.


Belo Monte Dam.

Belo Monte - Plant and Power Houses (Youtube/UHE Belo Monte)

Located in Pará, Brazil, Belo Monte Dam is a gravity dam. It was built in 2016 (6 years since completion).

Belo Monte Dam is the 2nd largest hydroelectric gravity dam in the world by installed capacity. The gravity dam has an installed capacity of 11,233MW. Belo Monte Dam stands 90 meters tall and can impound up to 1.89 billion m3 of water. Its structural volume is 25.36 million m3.

 

 Compare Belo Monte Dam with Boyabat Dam from Turkey.

 Compare Belo Monte Dam with Bhakra Dam from India.


Guri Dam.

Venezuela orders electricity blackouts to save money during drought - CGTN America

Guri Dam, also known as Simón Bolívar Hydroelectric Plant, is a 44-year-old gravity dam (completed in 1978). It is located in Necuima Canyon, Bolívar, Venezuela (South America).

The gravity dam stands at a height of 162 meters and impounds up to 135 billion m3 of water. Guri Dam has a structural volume of 29.80 million m3 and an installed capacity of 10,235MW.

 

 Compare Guri Dam with Jinping-II Dam from China.


Wudongde Dam.

Aerial view of Wudongde Dam

Located in Sichuan province, China, Wudongde Dam is an arch dam. It was built in 2021 (1 years since completion).

Wudongde Dam is the 2nd largest hydroelectric arch dam in the world by installed capacity. The arch dam has an installed capacity of 10,200MW. Wudongde Dam stands 240 meters tall and can impound up to 7.40 billion m3 of water.

 

 Compare Wudongde Dam with Mauvoisin Dam from Switzerland.


Dams Lists

Largest Dams by Installed Capacity (MW): world | Asia | Europe | North America | South America | USA | Canada | Australia | UK

Tallest Dams: world | Asia | Europe | North America | South America | USA | Canada | Australia | UK

Dams with Largest Structural Volume: world | Asia | Europe | North America | South America | USA | Canada | Australia | UK

Dams with Largest Reservoir Volume: world | Asia | Europe | North America | South America | USA | Canada | Australia | UK

Largest/tallest Dams by Type: Arch Dams | Embankment Dams | Gravity Dams | Arch-Gravity Dams | Buttress Dams


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