Geological Hazards analysis in Urban Tunneling by EPB Machine (Case study: Tehran subway line 7 tunnel)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 School of Mining, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Mining Engineering, University of Kashan, Iran

3 Department of Chemical Engineering. University of Kashan, Iran


Technological progress in tunneling has led to modern and efficient tunneling methods in vast underground spaces even under inappropriate geological conditions. Identification and access to appropriate and sufficient geological hazard data are key elements to successful construction of underground structures. Choice of the method, excavation machine, and prediction of suitable solutions to overcome undesirable conditions depend on geological studies and hazard analysis. Identifying and investigating the ground hazards in excavating urban tunnels by an EPB machine could augment the strategy for improving soil conditions during excavation operations. In this paper, challenges such as geological hazards, abrasion of the machine cutting tools, clogging around these tools and inside the chamber, diverse work front, severe water level fluctuations, existence of water, and fine-grained particles in the route were recognized in a study of Tehran subway line 7, for which solutions such as low speed boring, regular cutter head checks, application of soil improving agents, and appropriate grouting were presented and discussed. Due to the presence of fine particles in the route, foam employment was suggested as the optimum strategy where no filler is needed.


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