CRTG (China Railway Tunnel Group) Crews have finished the assembly and launch of one of the world’s largest full-face, diameter, hard rock TBMs in three months for the Kvesheti-Kobi highway tunnel project in Georgia.
The tunnel boring machine which has 15.08m-diameter, is going to excavate the 8,860m-long section of the project located at an altitude of nearly 2,000m and passes across the Gudauri Mountain – part of the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range in Georgia.
The alignment is anticipated to pass through geology including mostly marl and tuff with a max overburden of 1,121m and an average of over 600m.
The 182m-long machine weighs 3,900t, has a total power of 9,900kW and a max thrust of 22,600t. CRTG and China Railway Engineering Group (CREG) has jointly manufactured this TBM.
The KK Highway which is forming part of the Belt and Road Initiative, has the purpose to decrease Georgia’s reliance on shipping and become an essential route by connecting Russia, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and other neighboring countries. The central section crosses through the Gudauri Mountain area which experiences regular winter snowfalls that can disrupt traffic flows for continuous periods of over 20 days.