Difference between Dam and Reservoir
Dams and reservoir both are created to control the flow of a river and to store water for irrigation and other purposes. People often confuse a dam with a reservoir as they share some features. Although both are closely related to each other, they are different from each other. Let us see how a dam differs from a reservoir!
A Dam is a barrier that is built across a river, stream or estuary to hold back or retain the water. It is made from a variety of materials like steel, rock, and wood. It is primarily used to manage, save and use the water for specific purposes like electricity generation.
Advantages of Dam:
- It controls the flow of a river.
- It helps build a reservoir.
- It stores water for irrigation.
- It helps generate electricity from water.
- It protects the surrounding areas from flooding.
- It creates artificial lakes for swimming, water sports, boating, etc.
Types of Dam:
By structure, a dam can be of four types:
- Gravity Dam
- Arch Dam
- Buttress Dam
- Embankment Dam
Famous Dams in the World:
Some of the dams in the world that serve as giant barriers to many rivers are as follows:
- Daniel Johnson Dam in Canada
- Robert-Bourassa Dam in Canada
- Tehri Dam in India
- Guri Dam in Venezuela
- Kariba Dam in Zimbabwe
- Bratsk Dam in Russia
It is an open-air large water body that looks like an artificial lake or a water reservoir. It is generally formed by building a dam or wall across a river or a broad valley. However, it can also be created by surrounding a piece of land with dikes and then diverting a part of the river flow into that land.
The water stored in a reservoir can be used for multiple purposes like irrigation, hydropower, consumption and domestic use. It is fed by precipitation, rainwater runoff and from the flow of a river.
Types of Reservoirs:
Reservoirs can be of three types:
- Valley-dammed reservoir: It is created in valleys where mountainsides are used as the walls of the reservoir, and a dam or artificial wall is built to hold the water.
- Bank-side reservoirs: They are formed by diverting water from rivers or streams to an existing reservoir.
- Service reservoir: It is a large container that holds clean water. The polluted or contaminated water, which has been treated in a water plant, is stored in a service reservoir before it is supplied to end users.
Based on the above information some of the key differences between dam and reservoir are as follows:
|It is a concrete wall constructed across a river or a valley to control the flow of a river.
||It is a human-made large water body that is formed to store the water. It is a part of a dam.
|It is made of concrete, steel, etc.
||It is made of water that accumulates behind the dam.
|It helps create sites for hydroelectric generation.
||It is used to provide water for consumption and irrigation.
|It is a tourist attraction site. People from different parts of the world travel to different places to see the massive dams.
||It is a large water body with huge depth and thus can hold cruise ships and cargo ships. So, it can be used for water transportation by the people of that region.
|Types by the structure include gravity dam, arch dam, buttress dam and embankment dam.
||Its types include the valley-dammed reservoir, bank-side reservoir and service reservoir.