Earth Pressure Balanced Shield Tunneling

by Shigeo Kurosawa, Registered Civ. Engr. and General Mgr.; Civ. Engrg. Dept., Ohbayashi-Gumi, Ltd., Kanda Tsukasa-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan,

Serial Information: Journal of the Construction Division, 1981, Vol. 107, Issue 4, Pg. 609-618

Document Type: Journal Paper


The principles of earth pressure balanced (EPB) shield tunneling techniques are reviewed, whereby the face is stabilized without using compressed-air, and ground settlement is successfully kept to a minimum level. A general description of the mechanical structure of the EPB tunneling machine is given. The shield advancement control concept, which has a great influence on the successful achievement of soft ground tunneling, is examined. Even an EPB shield machine's merits and characteristics cannot be maxmized without appropriate shield advancement control. The concepts for the application of a shield machine with a closed face and mechanical excavation system are also discussed.

Subject Headings: Equipment and machinery | Soil pressure | Tunneling | Soil settlement | Soft soils | Compression | Soil stabilization | Excavation

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