Blowering Dam

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Blowering Dam
BloweringDam 001 20060211.jpg
Blowering Dam, in 2006.
Blowering Dam is located in New South Wales
Blowering Dam
Location of the Blowering Dam
in New South Wales
Country Australia
Location Snowy Mountains, New South Wales
Coordinates 35°24′05″S 148°14′52″E / 35.401389°S 148.247778°E / -35.401389; 148.247778
Status Operational
Construction began 1964
Opening date 1968
Owner(s) State Water Corporation
Dam and spillways
Type of dam Embankment dam
Impounds Tumut River
Height 114 metres (374 ft)
Length 747 metres (2,451 ft)
Dam volume 8,563 cubic metres (302,400 cu ft)
Spillways 1
Spillway type Concrete chute
Spillway capacity 2,350 cubic metres per second (83,000 cu ft/s)
Creates Blowering Reservoir
Total capacity 1,628,000 megalitres (57,500×10^6 cu ft)
Catchment area 1,606 square kilometres (620 sq mi)
Surface area 44.6 square kilometres (17.2 sq mi)
Maximum water depth 91 metres (299 ft)
Power Station
Operator(s) Snowy Hydro
Commission date 1969
Hydraulic head 86.6 metres (284 ft)
Turbines 1
Installed capacity 80 megawatts (110,000 hp)
Blowering Dam at State Water
Blowering Dam at WaterNSW

The Blowering Dam is a major ungated rock fill with clay core embankment dam with concrete chute spillway across the Tumut River upstream of Tumut in the Snowy Mountains region of New South Wales, Australia. The dam's purpose includes flood mitigation, hydro-power, irrigation, water supply and conservation. The dam is part of the Snowy Mountains Scheme, a vast hydroelectricity and irrigation complex constructed in south-east Australia between 1949 and 1974 and now run by Snowy Hydro. The impounded reservoir is called Blowering Reservoir.

Location and features[edit]

Commenced in 1964, completed in 1968, and upgraded in 2010, the Blowering Dam is a major ungated dam, located approximately 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) south of Tumut. The dam was built by consortium including Morrison, Knudsen, Utah and Mcdonald on behalf of the New South Wales Department of Land and Water Conservation for town water supplies, river flows and domestic requirements, irrigated agriculture, industry, flood mitigation and environmental flows.[1][2][3] Together with releases from Burrinjuck Dam, on the Murrumbidgee River, Blowering Dam also provides a regulated flow of water for the Coleambally and Murrumbidgee Irrigation Areas.[1]

The dam wall constructed with 8,563 cubic metres (302,400 cu ft) of rock fill with clay core is 112 metres (367 ft) high and 808 metres (2,651 ft) long. The maximum water depth is 91 metres (299 ft) and at 100% capacity the dam wall holds back 1,628,000 megalitres (57,500×10^6 cu ft) of water at 379 metres (1,243 ft) AHD. The surface area of the Blowering Reservoir is 44.6 square kilometres (17.2 sq mi) and the catchment area is 1,606 square kilometres (620 sq mi). The uncontrolled concrete chute spillway is capable of discharging 2,350 cubic metres per second (83,000 cu ft/s).[1][2][3]

A A$33 million upgrade of facilities was completed between 2009 and 2012, and involved the construction of a parapet wall on top of the dam wall crest and raising the spillway training walls. The addition of the parapet wall increased the crest height to 114 metres (374 ft). Storage capacity and water releases from the dam were not altered by the upgrade.[4][5]

Power generation[edit]

The dam houses a hydroelectric power station and has one turbine generator, with a generating capacity of 80 megawatts (110,000 hp) of electricity; with a net generation of 260 gigawatt-hours (940 TJ) per annum. The power station has 86.6 metres (284 ft) rated hydraulic head.


In 1978, Ken Warby set the water speed record of 511 kilometres per hour (318 mph) on Blowering Reservoir[6] - a record that still stands.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Blowering Dam" (PDF). State Water Corporation. 2009. Archived from the original (PDF brochure) on 13 September 2009. Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Register of Large Dams in Australia" (Excel (requires download)). Dams information. The Australian National Committee on Large Dams Incorporated. 2010. Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Blowering Dam". Water delivery: dams. State Water Corporation. Archived from the original on 10 April 2013. Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  4. ^ "Blowering upgrade". Projects: dam safety upgrades. State Water Corporation. 2012. Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  5. ^ "$33m flood-prevention works set for Blowering Dam". The Daily Advertiser. 24 April 2009. Retrieved 24 April 2009. 
  6. ^ "Warby announces bid on own world speed record". Sydney Morning Herald. 8 October 2008. Retrieved 11 August 2010. 

External links[edit]