The Moslem World

Arabia

Arabs quickly developed their country within one century after the impact of new Islamic religious founded by prophet Mohammed. Several irrigation dams around the new power centres of Mecca and Madina, were built. The following is a summary of 7th and 8thcentury dams in central Arabia.

Table 1.4 Summary of 7th and 8th century dams in central Arabia

Nearest City

Name

Height (m)

Length (m)

Mecca

Agrab

4.0

113

-

Ardab

5.5

315

-

Darwaish

10.0

150

-

Sammallaagi

11.0

225

Medina

Hashquq

2.0

130

-

Qusaybah

30.0

205

All of these dams were of the gravity type. They all have two outer walls of dry masonry and an earth or rubble core in between. The walls of some of these dams were vertical. Whereas, the other had inclined walls as much as 60%. Strong inclinations were applied to dams with relatively wide base, like Darwaish.

Although, most of these dams are already destroyed, one third of them like Saammallagi, are operative and more or less in their original shape.

South Western Asia

The Moslems conquered southwestern Asia in Seventh and Eighth centuries as far as the Indus river and Uzbakistan. During this time, Adhaim dam was built on the Adhaim river. This dam was located 150 km north of Baghdad. The dam was 130 meters long and 12 meters high. Adhaim Dam had an equal width all along its length. Upstream face was vertical and downstream one was stepped to 43% average inclination.

In the 10th century, a whole series of irrigation and power dams were built on Kur river, east of Shiraz in southern of Iran. Table 1.5 shows , dimensions and the name of the dams on the Kur river.

The Amir dam is a large power dam including 30 water wheel being driven by a retained water. This dam has a trapezoidal cross section with a relatively steep down stream face and a base width of more than twice its height.

Table 1.5 Dimensions and name of the dams on the Kur river

Name

Height (m)

Length (m)

Amir

9

103

Feizband

7

222

Tilkan

6

162

Mawan

6

66

Djahanabad

5

50

Towards the end of the 10th century, several large gravity dams were built under Ghaznavid rule. These dams were built in countries such as Iran, Afghanistan and Uzbakestan. Table 1.6 contains some information about Ghaznavid gravity dams. Khan dam was built of granite ashlar masonry and was barely stable.

Table 1.6 Ghaznavid Gravity Dams

Name

Nearest city

Height (m)

Length (m)

Gishtbank

Samarkand

8

25

Khan

Saamarkand

15.2

52

Sheshtaraz

Mashhad

25

35

Soltan Mahmud

Kabul

32

220

Genghis khan from Mongolia started to conquer the world in 1205. Mongolians initiated the construction of several dams in Iran. Table 1.7 shows the summary of the data.

Table 1.7 Mongolians Dams

Year of completion

Name

Nearest city

Type

Height (m)

Length (m)

1285

Saveh

Tehran

Gravity

25

65

~1300

Kebar

-

Arch

26

55

~1350

Kalat

Mashhad

Gravity

26

74

1400

Abbas

Tabas

Arch

20

?

~1450

Golestan

Mashhad

Gravity

16

-

The Saveh dam was the first structure built during this time. It was a gravity dam. The design of this dam was not successful. The river crushed the dam after the first impoundment.

In 16th and 17th century, the construction of arch dams discontinued and only gravity dams were built. Most of the well known dams during this time, were located in northeastern Iran and Uzbakistan.

Abdullahkan dam was built in the beginning of the 16th century. This dam is 150 km northwest of samarkand. The height of this dam is 15 meters and it has a length of 85 meters. Its downstream face was stepped to an average inclination of 69%. Khajoo dam is one of the most beautiful dams not only in the Moslem, but in the entire world which is located in Isfahan of Iran.

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