Qatar Rail takes delivery of 21 TBMs

Machines to be launched as part of Red Line North Underground project

A tunnel boring machine.
A tunnel boring machine.
Lebretha leaving Guangzhou.
Lebretha leaving Guangzhou.
Doha Metro Phase 1 - Red Line North.
Doha Metro Phase 1 - Red Line North.

Qatar Railways Company (Qatar Rail)  has taken delivery of the first of 21 tunnel boring machines (TBMs).

TBM S-865, also known as Lebretha, was manufactured by Germany’s Herrenknecht, and is the first of four TBMs which will be launched for the Doha Metro as part of the Red Line North Underground project – the design and build (D&B) joint venture that is being led by Italy’s Salini Impregilo, with South Korea’s S. K. Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd, and Galfar Al Misnad Engineering & Contracting W.L.L. (ISG JV).

For the Red Line North Underground project, a total of four TBMs (named Lebretha, Al Khor, Al Mayeda and Al Bidda) are proposed to bore the required rail tunnels.

TBM Lebretha will be assembled and launched from the Al Wahda site towards West Bay Central. Once there it will be disassembled and re-assembled at Al Wahda and then travel towards Doha Golf Course. It will bore the West Tunnel of the Drive while TBM Al Khor will bore the East Tunnel when it arrives.

TBM Lebretha will travel a distance of approximately 7.954km and will take around 22 months to complete – between Q3 2014 to Q2 2016). The average speed will be between 14m/day to 21 m/day, depending on ground conditions. And its daily excavation quantity will be approx. 680m³, with a predicted total excavation quantity of 5,408,720m³.

Each of the TBMs for the Doha Metro measure 7.05m in diameter and 120m in length, therefore to ensure transportation was successfully managed TBM Lebretha was dismantled into 22 sections which were easier to transport including the cutter head.

It started its journey, by sea, to Qatar and finally arrived over the weekend at the Doha Port. Some residents may have seen the sections of TBM Lebretha travelling along Al Corniche earlier this week making their way from the Doha Port to the first launch site of Al Wahda, next to the Qatar Exhibition Centre.

It will take a few months to re-assemble TBM Lebretha into a complete machine.

The scope of work for the ISG JV on the Red Line North project comprises the design and construction of approx. 13.4km twin-bored tunnel, including seven underground stations, between the proposed Msheireb Underground Station and Doha Golf Course via Doha West Bay. The tunnels will be built at an average depth of around 20m below ground.

The arrival of a further 20 TBMs will be seen over the coming months, to be utilised not only by the Red Line North Project but also by three more projects: Red Line South – led by QDVC and comprising G. S. Engineering and Construction and Al Darwish Engineering – will receive five TBMs; Green Line – led by PORR and comprising Saudi Bin Laden Group and Hamad bin Khaled Contracting – will receive six TBMs; and Gold Line – recently awarded to a D&B JV led by Aktor SA and comprising Larsen and Toubro (L&T), Yapi Merkezi Insaat ve Sanayi Anonim Sirketi (Yapi Merkezi), Sezai Turkes Feyzi Akkaya Marine Construction (STFA) and Al Jaber Engineering – will receive six TBMs.

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