Robbins/MHI EPBs commence dual tunnels in Delhi

Jul 14, 2008

In 2010, New Delhi will host the Commonwealth Games, bringing an expected 5.5 million visitors and a surge in the need for commuter services. A new extension of the city’s metro involves the deployment of 14 TBMs — a record for simultaneous tunneling in India. In the last week of June 2008, the second of two Robbins/MHI EPBs was launched on a new set of tunnels for the metro, bringing the city’s plans one step closer to realization.

The 6.5 m (21.4 ft) diameter machines are excavating parallel 2.0 km (1.2 mi) tunnels for the 5.3 km (3.3 mi) long line between Udyog Bhawan and Green Park areas. The two Robbins machines were built at Robbins facilities in China, from components designed and manufactured in cooperation with MHI in Japan, China and USA.

Both EPB machines were launched from the cut and cover site of Jor Bagh station—the first on May 15, 2008, and the second following in June. Both machines started without incident, and have fared well thus far. The TBMs are utilizing several types of tungsten carbide cutting tools to excavate geology consisting of sandy silt, silty sand and gravels with pressures up to 3 bar.

The machines feature several unique designs including a 55% cutterhead opening ratio to allow a smooth flow of muck and to avoid clogging during excavation. As the TBMs bore, they are also erecting a continuous lining consisting of reinforced concrete segments 275 mm (11 in) thick.

The Joint Venture of Continental Engineering Corporation (CEC Taiwan) and Soma Enterprise Ltd (India) were contracted to construct the 5.3 km (3.3 mi) line, part of more than 120 km (75 mi) of new rail being built for the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). An aggressive schedule calls for all tunneling to be complete by December 2009, ensuring the lines are running well in advance of the games.

The Robbins Company
Brianna Home

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