The Jet d'Eau, or water-jet, is a large fountain in Geneva, Switzerland, and is one of the city's most famous landmarks, as well as one of the largest fountains in the world. Situated at the point where Lake Geneva empties into the Rhone River, it is visible throughout the city and from the air, even when flying over Geneva at an altitude of 10 km.
Five-hundred litres of water per second are jetted to an altitude of 140 metres by two groups of pumps, operating on 2,400-V electricity with a total power of 1,000 kW. The water leaves the nozzle at a speed of 200 km/h. When it is in operation, at any given moment there are about 2,000 litres of water in the air.
The first Jet d'Eau was installed in 1886 a little bit further downstream from its present location. It was used as a safety valve for a power generator and could reach a height of about 30 metres. In 1891, its aesthetic value was recognised and it was moved to its present location to celebrate the Federal Gymnastics Festival and the 600th anniversary of the Swiss Confederation, on which occasion it was illuminated for the first time. Its maximum height was about 90 metres. The present Jet d'Eau was installed in 1951.
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