CREC 1193 and CREC 1237 TBMs, designed and manufactured by China Railway Engineering Equipment Group Co., Ltd. (CREG) were unveiled in Zhengzhou, China, which the company touts as the world’s first green TBMs. With a diameter of 9.16 m, length of 135 m and weight of about 1,900 t, the TBMs will be used on Fiumefreddo-Giampilieri section high-speed railway project, part of Palermo-Catania-Messina high-capacity railway in Sicily, Italy.
The project involves the construction of twin-tube single-track railway tunnels with a total length of 42 km, which includes 6 TBM driven subsections with a maximum length of about 9.1 km. The buried depth of strata varies from 10 to 300 m, the minimum curve radius is 300 m, and the geology along the alignment is composed mainly of marlstone, metamorphic clastic rock, limestone, dolomite, phyllite, gravel and silt with the UCS of 15 to 60 MPa.
CREG customized three EPB-open mode dual-mode TBMs for the tunneling works of the project, which applies green concepts to TBM design and construction and features intelligent control and low-carbon environmental protection. In terms of intelligent control, the TBMs can adjust and manage tunneling parameters automatically and intelligently according to different excavated strata during advance, so as to achieve the best match between tunneling efficiency and energy consumption independently. In terms of low-carbon environmental protection, the TBMs adopt energy-saving manufacturing technology and advanced dust removal technology to reduce dust, noise and carbon emissions, which helps conserve energy and reduce emissions.
One of the first two TBMs CREC 1193 is expected to arrive in Italy in August, and the third TBM CREC 1194 will roll off the production line in a few months.
The construction contract of the project was awarded to Webuild-Pizzarotti JV by Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (RFI). Once completed, Palermo-Catania-Messina high-capacity railway will connect the three major cities of Messina, Catania and Palermo and make transportation more convenient in Sicily.