World record smashed for drill and blast

2007 Dec 21

Using the latest underground construction equipment and a determination to make the most of favourable conditions, AF Anlegg’s tunnelling division, AF Skandinavia, set a new world record for the fastest weekly advance on a single face. M&C finds out how they did it.

The Sauda hydropower project in Norway comprises 30 km of tunnels and will include a new 500 GWh underground power station. The tunnel system is made up of branches that collect surface run-off water which is then directed into a single tunnel that feeds the power station (see map, page 32). With a total elevation drop of 500 m, relatively low volumes of water are required to drive the power station?s turbines.

Construction of the NOK 800 million project began in May 2005 and is scheduled for completion during 2009 (See M&C No 3/2005).

175 people work full time on the project, including sub-contractors, as well as mechanical and electrical installation contractors. Tunnelling at the site is now two thirds complete and currently carried out by AF Skandinavia. The client is Norwegian energy producer, Elkem Saudefaldene.

Epiroc operated under the trademark “Atlas Copco” prior to January 1, 2018.