The sluices in a tidal barrage must be large enough and efficient enough to allow the tidal basin behind the barrage to fill with water quickly. Unless the water level behind the barrage effectively follows that on the seaward side, the efficiency of the plant is reduced.
Where the water is sufficiently deep, efficient sluices can be built using the concept of the Venturi tube. Such a design will transfer water through the barrage extremely efficiency but it must be completely submerged. More conventional sluice gates usually need to be larger than venturi tubes to provide the same rate of transfer.
Many of the rivers suitable for tidal development carry significant ship-borne trade and water traffic. To enable ships and boats to continue to use a river, shiplocks must be included in the barrage. There must also be facilities to allow fish and other forms of marine life to pass the barrage. This is particularly important if the river is one used by migratory fish such as salmon.
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