Today, underwater tunnels are often created with humongous tunnel-boring machines (tbms) — sometimes called moles. These machines cost millions of dollars, but they can create large tunnels in a very short time. A circular plate with disk cutters rotates to cut through rock as the machine inches forward slowly.
How Are Underwater Tunnels Built?
Underwater tunnels are a unique form of engineering that allow us to travel beneath the surface of the water. These tunnels are built using various methods and techniques, and the process can be quite complex. In this article, we’ll explore how underwater tunnels are built and the challenges that engineers must overcome to make them a reality.
The first step in building an underwater tunnel is to determine the best location for it. This is done by assessing the water depth, the seabed geology, and the surrounding environment. Once the most suitable location is chosen, engineers must then decide the best way to construct the tunnel.
The most common method is to use a tunnel boring machine (TBM) to dig through the seabed and create the tunnel. TBMs are large, powerful machines that are built specifically for tunneling. They are equipped with a rotating cutting head that is used to dig through the seabed, while a shield protects the TBM from any debris or sediment.
Once the tunnel is excavated, the next step is to line the tunnel with a waterproof concrete or steel lining. This lining provides structural stability to the tunnel and prevents water from entering the tunnel. The lining is typically made from precast concrete or steel