COMACOE has developed niche expertise in designing and executing microtunnels from land to sea with sub-sea recovery of the microtunneling machine. COMACOE is proud to have successfully executed India’s first 3 such microtunnels in Gujarat in 2015 for GSPC Pipavav Power Company Ltd. (GPPC) for their sea water intake and outfall system. COMACOE also holds the proud privilege of having successfully executed first such microtunnels in Qatar for the prestigious Pearl Island for main contractor, METITO for the sea water intake outfall system. With its owned microtunnel boring machine (MTBM) equipment inhouse, COMACOE is fully geared up for any microtunnelling project.

What is Microtunneling?

Microtunneling is a trenchless technology which combines a remote controlled, steerable boring machine with pipe jacking technique to install product pipelines underneath the ground in a single pass. Microtunneling with pipe jacking (MTBMs) is usually adopted for diameters larger than 600mm and

smaller than 3000mm. The pipe is usually right behind the MTBM and enters the hole at the same rate of speed. Usually, the MTBM is controlled remotely from another location, and the machine is laser-guided. The process of microtunneling presents several advantages, such as being more cost-effective than large-scale drilling and being safer for urban environments.

Why Microtunnel?

Microtunnelling is a single pass, closed face tunnelling system used to install pipes between two access points through virgin ground. The closed face system prevents excavated earth from washing around the cutting face, allowing work to be carried out well below the water table. Microtunnelling only removes the material needed to accommodate the new pipe, minimising settlement/regress of the ground and reducing waste. In general, Microtunneling offers the following benefits over conventional pipe installation methods:

  • Remotely operated
  • Avoids the need for trenching
  • Reduces the need for operators to work at the cutting face or close to the machine
  • Very high accuracy levels
  • Versatile to work and install pipes in all types of ground conditions, especially varying ground conditions, where other trenchless techniques would not be feasible.
  • Reduces waste and the single pass operation is quicker than other techniques on large projects.
  • Microtunnelling’s low vibration characteristics make it ideal for installing pipes below or close to other structures.
  • Because of its minimal effect on the surroundings, MTBMs can be safely used in environmentally sensitive areas. Significantly low environment impact compared to open cut operations
  • Allows construction in all weather conditions.

Installation of pipelines that end in rivers, sea, etc.

Installation of pipelines that end in rivers or seas is done by removing the supply lines for the cutter head once the drilling the complete and then removing the head using a floating crane. A special fixture called the sea-recovery module is required for this. COMACOE has unique experience and capability in this. All requisite equipments are available in-house with COMACOE.


Contact Info

Coastal Marine Construction & Engineering Limited
C Cube, Mira-Bhayander Road, Mira Road (East)
Thane 401107, Maharashtra, India

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