At 8,806 metres (28,891 ft) long, the tunnel is being built as two parallel single-track tunnels which will run between Aichelberg and Mühlhausen im Täle under the Roter Wasen and the Boßler Mountain. It is one of a series of tunnels underneath the Swabian Jura range and when completed, it will be the longest tunnel on the new rail line and the fifth longest tunnel in Germany.
Tunnelling began back in 2015 when the East bound tunnel was commenced. This drive was completed in November 2016. The most section was the Westbound tunnel which started construction in April 2017 with the large diameter TBM holing through in June 2018.
The 11.34 m diameter, Herrenknecht-manufactured TBM successfully recently completed the second of the two bores. The first bore was 8,822 m long and the second was 8,806m long each having a minimum curve radius of 2,306 m. The two tunnels exit the underground section of the railway line directly at the start of the new ‘Filstalbrücke’, a 485 m long and 85 m high bridge over the Filstal River and highway A8.
VMT’s operations across the tunnelling works comprised supplying and supporting various guidance and production support systems and equipment including:
- A TUnIS Navigation TBM Laser – one of VMT’s highly accurate tunnel advance guidance systems
- Segment Documentation System SDS – which can aid the production processes, storage, transport and monitoring of the tunnel support segments from the first order to produce a segment to it final installation at the tunnel face.
- Ring Convergence Measurement System RCMS – which aids detection of potential risks caused by deformation forces due to ground movement or other forces experience in the segments during and after installation.
- Automatic Tailskin Clearance Measurement System SLuM Ultra 3.0 – which enhances the ring build process by measuring the last ring position relative to the TBM tailskin axis with millimetre-accuracy.
- VMT Data Management System VDMS, the next generation on from VMT’s successful IRIS Integrated Risk and Information System – which handles process data management of completed construction sections
The project also utilised a HADES information and communication system throughout the works.
In this instance the VDMS and SDS systems were interfaced to maximise data availability as this project, apart from one other the Koralmtunnel (KAT 2), has required the most significant adaptation of the SDS system to date in order to meet the project requirements.