Final Report of the International Commission for the Study of Locks (1986)

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The scope of the Commission was to be the study of locks. ship lifts, dry docks and river weirs. It was decided, at a meeting on the 20th November 1974, that this work should be divided as follows : 

  • Part A : Locks and ship lifts;
  • Part B : Dry docks;
  • Part C : River weirs.

During the first seven years. only locks had been discussed in any detail. It was therefore decide, at the 17th meeting of the Commission on 14th April 1982 to complete the study of locks as soon as possible and arrange for this work to be published. New proposals would then be submitted to the Council concerning further work to be undertaken by the Commission.

The work of the Commission has had, as its objective, a clear and sufficient statement of the present state of the art of designing and building locks especially concerning lock design and construction. An attempt has been made to identify and explain the general principles which govern the conception, design and operation of all types of locks.

It is not sufficient to lay down principles : they must be illustrated by examples. The Commission has made every effort to satisfy this requirement.

Special problems connected with the design and use of locks have also been studied. These are concerned with locks which playa part in the flood discharge of rivers, water saving basins where there are difficulties with feed-water, measures to control ice in countries having a harsh climate, locks to cope with fluctuations in the water level of reaches and measures to control the penetration of salt water through maritime locks. It is important to remember that everyone today is very conscious of the need to safeguard the environment and this aspect must be given due weight.

A list of locks which have been built in the countries represented by members who have taken part in the work of the Commission is given at the end of the report (Chapter 13). This list. which includes the main characteristics of each of the locks listed is limited to those built since 1960 or whose construction is expected to be undertaken during the next 5 years.

  • Written by: International commission for the study of locks
  • Published: November 08, 1986
  • Language: English