There are three sets of locks in the canal. A two-step flight at Miraflores, and a single flight at Pedro Miguel, lift ships from the Pacific up to Gatun Lake; then a triple flight at Gatun lowers them to the Atlantic side. All three sets of locks are paired; that is, there are two parallel flights of locks at each of the three lock sites. This, in principle, allows ships to pass in opposite directions simultaneously; however, large ships cannot cross safely at speed in the Gaillard Cut, so in practice ships pass in one direction for a time, then in the other, using both "lanes" of the locks in one direction at a time.
The lock chambers are 110 ft (33.53 m) wide by 1,050 ft (320 m) long, with a usable length of 1,000 ft (305 m). These dimensions determine the maximum size of ships which can use the canal; this size is known as Panamax. The total lift (the amount by which a ship is raised or lowered) in the three steps of the Gatun locks is 85 ft (25.9 m); the lift of the two-step Miraflores locks is 54 ft (16 m). The single-step Pedro Miguel lock has a lift of 31 ft (9.4 m). The lift at Miraflores actually varies due to the extreme tides on the Pacific side, between 43 ft (13 m) at extreme high tide and 64.5 ft (20 m) at extreme low tide; the tides on the Atlantic side, however, are very small.
The lock chambers are massive concrete structures. The side walls are from 45 to 55 ft (14 to 17 m) thick at the bases; towards the top, where less strength is required, they taper down in steps to 8 ft (2.4 m). The centre wall between the chambers is 60 ft (18 m) thick, and houses three long galleries which run the full length of the centre wall. The lowest of these is a drainage tunnel; above this is a gallery for electrical cabling; and towards the top is a passageway which allows operators to gain access to the lock machinery.
Read more about this topic: Panama Canal Locks
Other articles related to "design, designs":
... Book of a Musical, Original Score, Choreography, Costume Design, Lighting Design and Scenic Design ...
... "Process design" (in contrast to "design process" mentioned above) refers to the planning of routine steps of a process aside from the expected result ... Processes (in general) are treated as a product of design, not the method of design ... of the information age, consultants and executives have found the term useful to describe the design of business processes as well as manufacturing processes ...
... For more design details, see Boeing 747-400, 747-8, and 747SP ... The Boeing 747 is a large, wide-body (two-aisle) airliner with four wing-mounted engines ...
... Structured VLSI design is a modular methodology originated by Carver Mead and Lynn Conway for saving microchip area by minimizing the interconnect fabrics ... In complex designs this structuring may be achieved by hierarchical nesting ... Structured VLSI design had been popular in the early 1980s, but lost its popularity later because of the advent of placement and routing tools wasting a lot of area by routing, which is ...
... The design also allowed for Shea Stadium to be expandable to 90,000 seats (by completely enclosing the grandstand), or to be later enclosed by a dome if warranted ...
Famous quotes containing the word design:
“We find that Good and Evil happen alike to all Men on this Side of the Grave; and as the principle Design of Tragedy is to raise Commiseration and Terror in the Minds of the Audience, we shall defeat this great End, if we always make Virtue and Innocence happy and successful.”
—Joseph Addison (16721719)
“I begin with a design for a hearse.
For Christs sake not black
nor white eitherand not polished!
Let it be weatheredlike a farm wagon”
—William Carlos Williams (18831963)
“Nowadays the host does not admit you to his hearth, but has got the mason to build one for yourself somewhere in his alley, and hospitality is the art of keeping you at the greatest distance. There is as much secrecy about the cooking as if he had a design to poison you.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)