The Trans-Alaska Pipeline System was the largest private construction project of its time.
The Trans-Alaska Pipeline took $8 billion and two years to build. The pipeline is 800 miles long and has a diameter of four feet. The zigzagging pipeline carries crude oil from 250 miles north of the Arctic Circle to the terminal at Valdez. It crosses three mountain ranges, 34 major waterways, and 800 small streams. The oil travels at 5.4 mph and takes 6.2 days to travel the whole pipeline. It may sound like a slow process but keep in mind that 88,000 barrels of oil can go through those pipes in an hour! The people who built the Trans-Alaska Pipeline experienced life-threatening situations including temperature drops as low as -60 degrees Fahrenheit along with wind and blowing snow. Add to the low temperatures a complete lack of sunlight for 56 days of the Alaskan winter when workers had to continue to build the pipeline in the dark. The engineers and builders who worked on the Pipeline sacrificed a lot to make it one of the most successful and amazing structure of all time.
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