A cut-off wall to seal off the dam base at the Monte Grande Dam in the southwestern province of Barahona in the Dominican Republic has been successfully completed, Bauer has announced.

Bauer Fundaciones Dominicana S.R.L., the Dominican subsidiary of Bauer Spezialtiefbau GmbH, was commissioned to build the cut-off wall, with works starting in May 2019 and successful completion achieved in May 2020.

The Monte Grande Dam is an important infrastructure project for the country. In addition to controlling water levels in the Yaque del Sur River, the 55m tall dam will also be used for flood protection and generation of hydroelectric energy. Other aspects include tourism and the use of dammed water for irrigation of agricultural land.

In total, Bauer constructed around 26,000 m² of cut-off wall over a length of 1,350m, down to an average depth of 23m and with a thickness of 800mm underneath the dam base. Bauer Dominicana used a Bauer MC 96 duty-cycle crane with a Bauer BC 40 cutter as well as a BE 500 separation plant from Bauer MAT Slurry Handling Systems for the construction.

This project was the first time that a trench cutter had ever been used in the Dominican Republic, and it was also the first time that Bauer Dominicana has been part of a dam construction project.

A particularly challenging aspect was the extremely variable working height, which ranged between 152m and 197m above sea level over the length of the dam. 

“To cope with this height difference, 17 different work platforms were created from which the cut-off wall was constructed using a cutter,” explained Bruno Luz, Project Manager at Bauer Fundaciones Dominicana S.R.L.