Two third of the segment production for the Istanbul Strait Road is now completed. CBE Group supplied four sets of segment moulds to YMSK JV for the lining of the Bosphore crossing. Around 10 000 tunnel segments have been produced so far since production start in November 2013. A total of 15,048 concrete pieces forming 1,672 rings are necessary to line the 3,4 km long double deck tunnel.
The precast factory based in the eastern part of Istanbul, Paşaköy, has an average production output of 378 segments per week and a daily rate of up to 54 pieces or six complete rings. Each concrete ring has an exterior diameter of 13,2 m, a thickness of 600 mm and a width of impressive 2,000 mm and is composed of six standard, two counter-key- and one key segment. The standard segments weight over 14 tons. Handling equipment from CBE comprises two storage clamps supporting 17 and 45 tons, a vacuum lifter and a tilting device. The segments are cured by a heating system under each formwork, with strict temperature control.
The tunnel is designed to withstand earthquakes of magnitude up to 7.5 on Richter scale under the consideration of maximum safety. Several specific applications have therefore been integrated in the tunnel lining design, such as steel lining and anti-seismic gaskets that will give the tunnel the necessary movement flexibility. CBE Group too contributed to this increased safety standard and developed so-called seismic pockets, ensuring a reinforced bolting between the segments.
The tunnel's lowest depth under the sea level is 106 m while its maximum depth below the seabed is 61 m with an overburden measuring 25 m. The 5.4 km double-deck tunnel will connect Kazlıçeşme on the European and Göztepe on the Asian part of Istanbul on a 14.6 km route. It will cross the Bosphore beneath the seabed, with the aim to alleviate Istanbul’s traffic pressure. It is at about 1 km south of the undersea railway tunnel Marmaray, which was opened on 29 October 2013. With this new route, the journey time between Kazlicesme and Göztepe will be shortened from 100 minutes to 15 minutes.
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