Indian demand for TBMs continues at pace Oct 2012
Project finance data reveals India remains as the biggest single market in the world, with underground construction projects helping drive a growing number of heavy civil engineering contracts. Since the beginning of 2012 Herrenknecht reports delivery of 18 TBMs to Indian metro and water projects, with all the world's major TBM manufacturers also well represented in this important market.
- The first TBM is in the ground and has completed the first 90m of its drive, the second is due to launch on its parallel drive within days, a third has just launched and three more TBMs are being assembled on site as mobilisation reaches advanced stage for 24km of twin running metro tunnel alignment for Chennai in India.
- The underground sections to the north and west are being excavated in five packages by three international consortia, utilising eight machines from Herrenknecht, one from Robbins, and two Chinese-built machines from STEC (Shanghai Tunnel Engineering Company).
- But Chennai is only the latest in a growing list of projects that demonstrates the high-intensity demand for tunnelling in India - a demand that has seen Herrenknecht of Germany meet orders for 18 large diameter TBMs this year alone.
Herrenknecht TBM broke Indian record at mammoth Veligonda project
- Figures released earlier this month by Dealogic, a finance platform used by global and regional investment banks worldwide, show that India remains the most important international market in terms of its total project expenditure - its $35.52 billion worth of projects that reached financial close between Jan-Sep 2012 means that India has the largest order book of any country in the world.
- In India's rapidly growing large cities - more than 30 of which have a population of a million or more - as well as in remote regions, tunnelling technology is heavily involved in the expansion of both metro systems and water supply.
- This year a Herrenknecht double shield 7.9m diameter TBM achieved an Indian record of 525m of excavated tunnel in a single month for the enormous Veligonda water project in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The record came as a welcome boost for a drive that reached standstill for more than a year after the machine became stuck following inundation under high water pressure.
- The project involves piping water from the Srisailam Dam on the River Krishna over a distance of some 100km in order to alleviate water shortages caused by low rainfall. An 18km section of this is being excavated by the Nuziveedu Swath Coastal Consortium using a Herrenknecht 7.9m diameter TBM. Since launch in October 2008 to June this year more than 7km of the drive through extremely challenging ground has been completed. A Robbins 10m double shield TBM, which launched in 2009, is excavating the parallel No 2 tunnel.
- One of the largest tunnelling projects in the country is the Alimineti Madhava Reddy (AMR) project to bring water from the existing Srisailam Reservoir to the dry arid plains of the Nalgonda District of Andhra Pradesh. Central to the project is a 43.5km tunnel that is to be driven from each portal towards a mid-alignment junction by two 10m diameter double shield Robbins TBMs.
- On the other side of the subcontinent, in Mumbai on the west coast, the existing water supply network is being renewed and expanded. As part of this development three hard rock Herrenknecht gripper TBMs are excavating more than 16km of drinking water tunnels for India's largest city.
- But it is in the area of urban metro infrastructure that new TBM orders have expanded at the fastest rate, as Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkata all progress hundreds of kilometres of urban tunnelling.
- Herrenknecht EPBMs in the range of 6.35-6.6m are being used to excavate 71km of metro tunnels in four of India's biggest cities. In March 2012 the Italian-Thai Development Public Co began tunnelling with the first two of four Herrenknecht machines for the metro in Kolkata. In May and July the first intermediate breakthroughs took place.
- In Delhi, where Herrenknecht TBMs have already successfully completed 30km of metro tunnels, two more TBMs launched on new excavations for Pratibha Industries in March and April (2012). On July 26 (2012) the first of these completed its first intermediate breakthrough.
- Recent expansions in TBM orders have been backed up by the creation in 2007 of Herrenknecht India Pvt Ltd in Chennai, in the state of Tamil Nadu. About 90 employees support sub-continental projects and customers from the company's Indian base, and in December 2011 a new building on the branch premises expanded the company's storage, steel construction and assembly capacities to a total of 3,700 m2 - for the growing Indian market.
Current and planned tunnelling activity in India - TunnelTalk, July 2008
bC India impresses with premiere show - TunnelTalk, February 2011
Delhi metro emerging - TunnelTalk, March 2002
Delhi metro meets deadlines - TunnelTalk, October 2010
Triumph out of tough going on Delhi Metro - TunnelTalk, October 2004
Bangalore metro TBMs inaugurated - TunnelTalk, May 2011
Underground advance for Bangalore Metro - TunnelTalk, July 2010
Chennai metro announces surprise award - TunnelTalk, March 2011
Prequalifiers line up for Chennai Metro works - TunnelTalk, July 2010
SELI and Coastal form subcontinent alliance - TunnelTalk, March 2011
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