The builders have driven 237 meters of the main tunnel as part of a New Baikal tunnel construction project within the 1006-1013 kilometer section of the East-Siberian Railway.
The new 6,682-meter-long-tunnel will be a single-track installation. Two drainage galleries and two service galleries of a total length of about 4 kilometers will be built. The tunnel is driven using the 10.0-meter-diameter Lovat RM394DS Tunnel-Boring Machine.
The seismic situation in the region imposes special requirements upon the design and materials that are used for construction. The new tunnel will withstand an earthquake of a magnitude of up to 8.5 points.
About 250 meters of the main tunnel will be driven and 50% of the scope of construction of bridges on the access roads will be completed by the end of the year 2014.
The New Baikal tunnel construction project is part of the Baikal-Amour Railway and Trans-Siberian Railway upgrading program; it is of a high strategic importance for the economy of the region and of the country as a whole. The new tunnel function is primarily to improve operational reliability and boost up the throughput capacity of the railway section in the Delbichinda – Daban section of the East Siberian Railway.
About 3.5 kilometers of the tunnel are going to be driven during the year 2015. The installation is scheduled for commissioning by the end of 2017. The New Baikal tunnel will be one of the longest tunnels in the country.
Sergej Berdnikov / SK MOST