The first of two 9.93m diameter Aker Wirth telescopic shield TBMs has been delivered to one of Europe’s most important infrastructure projects, the 32.5km long Koralm Tunnel in Austria, a vital section of the major new rail high-speed route between Graz and Klagenfurt.
Both machines will begin boring in late 2012 on the project’s main lot – KAT 2, an 18km long twin bore section at the heart of the Koralm tunnel.
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A particular challenge on this complex project is gaining access to the underground construction work area. The only solution has been the sinking of a 60m deep equipment supply shaft, so that the machine can transported to a cavern and assembled in-situ.
“With the initial acceptance of the first TBM, we have achieved an important milestone for our tunnelling project KAT 2 (Koralmtunnel Lot 2),” said Robert Goliasch, mechanical engineer of the contractor, ARGE Koralmtunnel KAT2.
Client ÖBB is building the new high performance railway between Graz and Klagenfurt. This 130km long rail line is part of the Baltic-Adriatic axis of Eastern Europe via Austria to northern Italy.