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Fontinettes Boat Lift

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Fontinettes Boat Lift : Michelin's recommendations

This ascenseur à bâteaux (1887) on the Canal de Neuffossé showcases the technology of the 19C. It replaced the five locks that until 1967 were necessary for barges to pass a 13m difference in levels. The principle was simple: the barges moved into two lock chambers or pools filled with water, which were fixed on two enormous pistons that created a set of hydraulic scales of sorts. One of the lock chambers would rise as the other went down. Nowadays, a giant lock 500m upstream can deal with six barges at once.

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