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Conowingo Dam
September 2013
My family and I have been driving over the Conowingo Dam coming and going from my uncle's house for many years. I never knew too much about it. While at the Havre de Grace seafood festival we signed a petition in support of the relicensing of the dam. As a result we were notified about an open house and tour being held down there. It was a fun day and the tour was extremely interesting. I'd never been inside a hydro electric plant before and really knew very little about the history or workings of the Conowingo plant.

(click any photo for a larger version)

01 Delaware Memorial Bridge 02 Susquehanna River Road 03 Crossing Conowingo Dam
Crossing the Delaware Memorial Bridge on the way to Maryland
Susquehanna River Road leads to the Conowingo Dam
Crossing the Conowingo Dam
04 Crossing Conowingo Dam 05 Crossing Conowingo Dam 06 Crossing Conowingo Dam
Note the large gantry crane on top of the Conowingo Dam. It's used for opening the flood gates.
The Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant sign is lit in neon at night
Driving over the power house at the Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant
07 Conowingo Dam Sign 08 Birds 09 Conowingo Dam
Entering the plant
Conowingo attracts many birds
Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant as seen from Fisherman's Park
10 Conowingo Dam 11 Station Service Units and Turbines 12 Station Service Units Sign
Exterior of the power house
Inside the turbine hall
The 2 station service units are used to power the plant operations and can be used to "black start" the power grid
13 Station Service Unit 1 14 Station Service Unit 1 15 Turbines
The 2 station service units are used to power the plant operations and can be used to "black start" the power grid
The 2 station service units are used to power the plant operations and can be used to "black start" the power grid
Looking out over the turbines inside Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant
16 Turbine 5 17 Turbines 18 Crane
Turbine 5 was the only one in operation the day we were there
Looking out over the turbines inside Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant
Cranes play a big part in operating the plant
19 Turbine 5 Plaque 20 Turbine 6 21 Tank
The fact that the vintage equipment has been maintained and is still in operation is impressive
Turbine 6
This tank is dated 1928 and is part of the pressure system for the governors
22 Pressure System Plaque 23 Turbine 6 Control 24 Turbine 8
This tank is dated 1928 and is part of the pressure system for the governors
I love seeing the old equipment and controls. New equipment just doesn't have the same look.
Turbine 8
25 Generators 26 Transformers 27 Westinghouse Tag
The newest turbines are outside
Transformers and power distribution equipment
Vintage Westinghouse tag
28 View from Conowingo Dam 29 View from Conowingo Dam 30 Bird
Looking down the Susquehanna River from the Conowingo Power Plant
Looking down the Susquehanna River from the Conowingo Power Plant
I'm not a bird expert, but I'm going to say this is a hawk
31 Bird 32 Conowingo Dam 33 Conowingo Dam
I'm not a bird expert, but I'm going to say this is a hawk
Looking across the dam from the power house
Looking across the dam from the power house
34 Birds 35 Conowingo Dam Sign 36 Conowingo Dam Sign
The rocks below the dam attract all varieties of birds
Looking up to the power distribution equipment
The Conowingo Hydro Electric Plant sign is lit in neon at night
37 Cranes 38 Birds 39 Susquehanna River and Bridges
The gantry cranes on top of the Conowingo Dam are used for opening the flood gates.
The rocks below the dam attract all varieties of birds
Looking down the Susquehanna River from the Conowingo Power Plant
40 View from Conowingo Dam 41 Birds 42 Bald Eagle
Looking down the Susquehanna River from the Conowingo Power Plant
The rocks below the dam attract all varieties of birds
This was the only bald eagle we saw
43 Bald eagle 44 Food Tents 45 Fish Lift
This was the only bald eagle we saw
Food tents were set up on the banks of the river. You can't beat free lunch!
The east fish lift is used to allow migratory and native fish to swim upstream past the dam
46 Mom 47 Conowingo Dam Sign 48 Turbine 4 Area
My mother in her personal protective equipment
Looking up to the power distribution equipment and the iconic neon sign
Inside Conowingo Power Plant in the area around turbine 4
49 Butterfly Valve 5 Control 50 Butterfly Valve 5 Control 51 Turbine
The controls for the massive butterfly valves look like they belong in a museum. It's very cool to know that they still are used.
The controls for the massive butterfly valves look like they belong in a museum. It's very cool to know that they still are used.
Looking inside a turbine that has been retrofitted with modern environmental equipment
52 Turbine 53 Turbine 54 Butterfly Valve 4 Control
Looking inside a turbine that has not been retrofitted
Looking up into a turbine
The controls for the massive butterfly valves look like they belong in a museum. It's very cool to know that they still are used.
55 Discharge 56 Fish Lift 57 Susquehanna River
Water is discharged after passing through the turbine and generating power
The east fish lift is used to allow migratory and native fish to swim upstream past the dam
Looking down the Susquehanna River from Fisherman's Park
58 Conowingo Dam 59 Conowingo Dam 60 Conowingo Dam
The discharge from the the power plant attracts fish
Looking at the entire dam from Fisherman's Park
The east fish lift is used to allow migratory and native fish to swim upstream past the dam
61 Conowingo Dam 62 Conowingo Dam 63 Susquehanna River
We couldn't have asked for better weather for visiting the dam
Conowingo Dam creates a great place to fish
Looking down the Susquehanna River from Fisherman's Park
64 Conowingo Dam 65 Conowingo Dam
Conowingo Hydro Electric Power Plant as seen from Fisherman's Park
Conowingo Hydro Electric Power Plant power house as seen from Fisherman's Park

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