Herrenknecht’s custom designed 13.91 m diameter tunnel boring machine (TBM) completed 3.2 km of tunnelling for the Belchen rehabilitation project last month, 3 months ahead of schedule.
The single shield TBM completed the excavation through the Belchen mountain range – a complex geology of gypsum, clay, lime, dolomites and marl – within 16 months.
When the TBM was launched from Hägendorf on 9 February 2016, Swiss Federal Roads Office (FEDRO) Director Jürg Röthlisberger said that the concept of the project was “construction without queues”.
The machine, 75 m in length and weighing 2,000 t, completed up to 90 m of tunnelling per week under the direction of Marti Tunnelbau AG, which FEDRO commissioned for the project.
The Belchen Tunnel comprises a twin tube road tunnel that stretches between Basel and Lucerne, through the Jura Mountains, and is used by a significant amount of the north-south road traffic and domestic Swiss traffic.
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