8 New Lovsuns EPB-TBMs for Metro Tunnels in Istanbul

Istanbul-Lovsuns-metroIstanbul is one of the most vibrant cities of the world, connecting the European with the Asian continent. With more than 14 million residents, solutions for urban transportation are urgently needed and building tunnels with tunnel boring machines is the first choice. After previous successful projects for wastewater and metro tunnels, the Cana­dian-Chinese LOVSUNS Tunneling Canada Ltd. is again set to deliver 8 more TBMs for two Metro Line projects in Istanbul.

The whole Metro and urban transportation system in Istanbul comprises more than 230 km in operation, with an additional 30 to 40 km under construction. In 2017, there is a demand for more than 20 TBMs for the extension of the metro tunnel system on the European and Asian side of Istanbul. Starting with two successful preceding projects, LOVSUNS won the order of 8 more earth pressure balance (EPB) TBMs for the Alarko-Cengiz and the Makyol/Ictas/Kalyon/Astor joint ventures.

Kaynarca-Pendik-Tuzla Metro Line Project

On the Asian side of Istanbul, 19.78 km double line tunnels are planned for the extension of the Metro Line M4 with the Kaynarca and Pendik stations and the connection of the M4 Kaynarca station with the Tuzla station of the B2 Line. The Alarko-Cengiz joint venture will drive 2 TBMs from the C cross section to Kaynarca station (2 x 3.2 km) and 2 TBMs from the C cross section to Tuzla station (2 x 3.3 km). For two further TBM drives from the Pendik to the Hastane station (2 x 3.39 km) there is one LOVSUNS TBM with pending or­der and an existing TBM is planned to use. The launch date for the TBMs is planned for February 2018.

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For the ground conditions, mixed geology with soft to hard and abrasive to very abrasive rock formations (quarzite, limestone, sand stone, mud stone, some abrasive quarzite, dayks and more), also some short sections with alivium are expected.

Kirazli-Halkali Metro Line Project

Istanbul-metro-map On the European side of Istanbul, 13.20 km double line tunnels are planned for the connection of the Metro Line M3 (M1A) with Halkali station and M1B with Kirazli Bagcilar station, crossing the M9 Metro Line at Mimar Sinan sta­tion. The Makyol/Ictas/Kalyon/Astor joint venture will drive two TBMs from the Mimar Sinan to Kirazli Bagcilar station (2 x 2.7 km) and 2 TBMs from the planned Fatih to the Yarimburgaz station (2 x 3.9 km). The launch date for the TBMs is planned for April 2018.

For the ground conditions mixed geology with generally soft rock, mud stone, sand stone, marn, alivium and filled material are expected.

TBM specifications

Both joint ventures ordered four TBMs each with mixed face cutterhead, 1,200 KW main drive power, high power, torque and advance rates, unique wear protection on cuttinghead and screw conveyor as well as high screw conveyor output.

“We designed and engineered tailormade TBMs for Istanbul in Toronto and completely produced the TBMs in the facility in Liaoyang, China. That means that we very successfully united the best practice, knowledge and technology of both companies for the highest advantage of our customers,” explains Hongyu Xue, Managing Director of LOVSUNS Tunneling Canada Ltd.

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