Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Some Assembly Required! - Part Two

I continue to be the consumate "sidewalk superintendant," following the progress of re-assembling the World's Largest Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM.)

"Bertha," as she has become known, was first assembled and tested in Osaka. Following proof of performance, she was de-constructed into 41 pacakages. These are now being painstaking re-assembled in an 80-foot ( 24 m) deep "Launch Pit."

After a couple of "false" starts, I called the State Route 99 (SR99) project office to gain an understanding of why Car 3 was back and forth under the gantry crane.  Turns out her top deck had to be removed for the placement of electrical transformers.  One 690v, the other 480v; see diagram above.

Finally, on Friday April 26, the exciting part began.  Each support car is lifted twice. The first lift off the Goldhofer multi-axle, multi-tired transporter. The second lift the car off its shipping cradle. Then  transport to the Pit.

The TBM is being reconstructed rear-to-front; so Car 3 was installed, followed by Car 2 early this morning. Since a picture is worth a thousand words, let the annotated photos bring you up to date.

As a reminder, there is a button labeled "SR99 Web Cams" in the right hand utility column.

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