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COMPANY NEWS Excavation advances nuclear research 15 May 2013
Sandvik News Release
Underground extensions to laboratories in Finland and Sweden are helping forward research into subterranean nuclear repositories.
Sandvik DT921i jumbo

Sandvik DT921i jumbo

Contractor Strabag Sverige used Sandvik DT920i jumbos and the iSURE tunnel excavation management tool to complete two transportation tunnels and associated experimental niches at a depth of approximately 350m for the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Authority, Svenska Känrbränslehandling AB. The excavations took place on the island of Äspö, where technical solutions to problems associated with underground repositories for radioactive waste are being tested in a real environment and at full scale.
The Strabag contract included blasting, loading, transportation of rock, sealing and reinforcement work on two transportation tunnels, with an option for a third tunnel. Excavation volume was approximately 13,000m3. The blasting work itself formed part of the research carried out.
In Finland, contractor Destia Oy has selected Sandvik jumbos to excavate an underground rock characterisation facility for Posiva, the Finnish nuclear waste management agency. The ONKALO facility, which advances bedrock research and provides an opportunity to develop excavation and final disposal techniques in realistic conditions, will be extended to a final disposal depth of approximately 400m.
The ONKALO excavation contract comprises an access tunnel and three shafts: a personnel shaft and two ventilation shafts. The tunnel will be 5.5m x 6.3m high, with a gradient of 10%, through rock of the medium Gneiss type with a strength of 114 MPa.
Computer-controlled Sandvik DTi series jumbos come in five different models for excavation of 12–231m2 cross sections using face drilling, bolt hole drilling and long-hole drilling techniques. An advanced automatic mode enables high process repeatability and best possible excavation predictability. The rigs are equipped with the Sandvik iSURE tunnel excavation management tool, which ensures optimised blasting, better pull-out, reduced requirements for scaling, increased rock loadability and smoother collaring in the following round.

           

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