Boring Machines

MTBMs are guided and remotely controlled from the control station. Generally there are two types of MTBMs, both of which have face support capabilities.

  • Pressurised slurry MTBMs push the excavated materials from the face of the machine, via the slurry pipes, to the slurry system installed above ground. 
  • Auger machine MTBMs move the excavated materials to the launch shaft with a cased screw auger.

Generally, the pressurised slurry MTBMs have a rotating cutting head for excavation powered by a self-contained motor. The face also contains a crushing mechanism to crush larger rocks into manageable sizes for transportation through the slurry pipes. Behind the cutter head there is a pressurised slurry mixing chamber to ensure face stability.  

A complex steering unit is also contained which has steering jacks for steering corrections. There are various other control valves, pressure gauges and camera systems that measure real time data to relay information to the control station. 

The MTBM is capable of independently counter-balancing earth and hydrostatic pressures.  The earth pressure is balanced by the control of advance rates and excavation rates of spoil materials.  The groundwater pressure is balanced by managing pressurised slurry in the slurry chamber of the MTBM.

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