China unveils revolutionary boring and blasting machine to enhance tunnel construction

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Picture credit: China Railway Science & Industry Group Corporation

22nd May 2024 – (Beijing) Chinese engineers have introduced a groundbreaking boring and blasting machine (BBM), poised to transform tunnel construction by enhancing the excavation efficiency of extremely hard rock by over 30 per cent. The innovation, developed by the China Railway Science & Industry Group Corporation (CRSIC) in collaboration with Tsinghua University’s National Key Laboratory of Hydroscience and Engineering, is set to revolutionise projects in hydropower, mining, and infrastructure development.

Chen Jiale, a leading researcher at CRSIC, highlighted the machine’s potential during an interview with China’s Science and Technology Daily. “This machine addresses the critical challenges faced in constructing large-scale tunnels, providing a novel approach that combines robust drilling and blasting with advanced tunnel boring technologies,” Chen explained.

The BBM integrates mechanical, electrical, and hydraulic systems with advanced sensing and guidance technologies. It features dual cutter heads that utilise both traditional and modern excavation methods, significantly improving efficiency while minimising environmental impact.