Increased productivity in construction of civil and mining tunnels through the use of high-capacity tunnel-boring machines and continuous belt conveyor muck haulage

  • J. G. Beatty
  • R. J. Ganey
  • J. E. Killingsworth


The use of a large diameter high production tunnel boring machine interfaced with a high capacity continuous belt conveyor system provides a highly productive and cost effective construction system for both civil and mining tunnels.

Continuous advance of the tunnel boring machine for a distance of 1,000 feet (305 m) allows for very efficient operation of the system. The available cost reductions will likely prove that this approach to muck handling will make marginally viable projects economically feasible. The contractor who elects to use this system will find that he is positioned to be much more competitive to owners.

The continuous advance system uses well proven technologies which are now being interfaced to provide new operational capabilities. Tunnel boring machines are well proven in many different types of materials and tunnel sizes. Belt conveyor systems of the type used in this application have a history of well over 40 years proven usage in underground mines such as coal mining, potash mining, salt mining, and copper mining. Overland material haulage has been very successful using the same conveyor concepts.

HAC® — High Angle Conveyor, Muck, TARP, TBMs — Tunnel Boring Machines, Trailing Conveyor,

This paper is demonstrated on a Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago project. The total project, Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (TARP) was designed in the early 1970’s with the intent to reduce pollution and provide flood relief for Chicago and many neighboring communities.


Tunnel Boring Machine Tunnel Construction Conveyor System Horizontal Curf Mining Tunnel 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. G. Beatty
    • 1
  • R. J. Ganey
    • 2
  • J. E. Killingsworth
    • 2
  1. 1.Continental Conveyor and Equipment CompanyWinfieldUSA
  2. 2.U.S. Heavy DivisionPerini CorporationChicagoUSA

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