Of all the world's power sources, the most amazing might be the sheer force of water under pressure. Seeking to harness this incredible capacity, humans have built massive structures, monuments to engineering skill and brilliance. Here are the largest hydroelectric power stations of all time.
The 7,661 ft (2,335 m) long Three Gorges Dam in Sandouping, Yiling,Hubei, China, with a total electric generating capacity of 22,500 MW, opened in 2008 after fourteen years of construction.
The 25,981 ft (7,919 m) long Itaipu Dam on Paraná River, on the Brazil-Paraugay border, with a capacity of 14,000 MW, constructed between 1970 and 1984
(via Wikimedia Commons and Jorge Saenz/AP)
The 24,364 ft (7,426 m) Guri Dam on the Caroni River, Venezuela, with a capacity of 10,235 MW, constructed between 1963 and 1978
The 8 miles (12.5 km) long Tucuruí Dam on the Tocantins River, Tucuruí County, Pará, Brazil, with a capacity of 8,370 MW. Phase I completed in 1984, and the Phase II will be done in the late 2010s
The 5,223 ft (1,592 m) long Grand Coulee Dam on the Columbia River, Washington, constructed between 1933 and 1942 with two power plants. A third was added between 1967 and 1974. Its total capacity is 6,480 MW.
The 2,785 ft (849 m) long Longtan Dam, a roller-compacted dam on the Hongshui River, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China, planned since the 1950s, but constructed between 2001 and 2009. Its capacity was increased to 6,426 MW in 2009.
The 3,497 ft (1,066 m) long Sayano-Shushenskaya Dam on the Yenisei River, near Sayanogorsk, Russia, opened in 1978, with a total installed capacity of 6,400 MW.
The 3,494 ft (1,065 m) long Krasnoyarsk Dam on Yenisey River, Russia, supplies 6,000 MW of power, opened in 1972
(via Wikimedia Commons)