Insights in the Industry

A discussion of the latest topics and trends

Beyond Boring: A Journalist’s Fascination with Tunnelling

Those working in tunnelling understand that this is an industry more fascinating than any other. What is it about tunnelling that makes it so exciting to those in the field? Guest author Roland Herr shares his viewpoints and those of two industry experts who have amassed decades of experiences. Learn More

NAT Featured Image

Robbins Rocks NAT

The Robbins Company had a strong presence at the North American Tunneling (NAT) Conference in Los Angeles, CA this past June. Read on to learn how Robbins stole the show! Learn More

James Robbins at the Humber River TBM launch, 1956

A Tradition of Innovation: The 2013 Muir Wood Lecture takes a cue from Robbins’ Long History

Find out about the genesis of modern tunnel boring machines, the precursor to EPBs and Slurry machines, and the next steps for our industry in Dick Robbins’ upcoming Sir Alan Muir Wood lecture. Learn More


Salamanders, Pseudo Scorpions, and Quartz Crystals: How my Recent Site Visit proved that TBM Tunneling is the Greenest Way to Go

What do these three things have in common? They all factor in to the environmentally friendly tunneling operations at the Jollyville Transmission Main in Austin, Texas, USA. Read on for more insights from our recent site visit. Learn More

Women in Tunneling Inaugeral Event

What is WIT, and Why Does it Matter?

Women in Tunneling (WIT) is the industry’s newest networking group, dedicated to bringing their namesake demographic together and attracting more women to careers in tunneling and underground construction. Learn More

Cutter changing at Pahang Selangor.

Research and Development: A Sneak Peek at the Next Generation of Disc Cutters

Robbins disc cutter advancements are accelerating, from pressure compensated disc cutters for soft ground TBMs to remote cutter monitoring. Read on for a snapshot of our latest R&D projects. Learn More

schematic of concept sub-sea tunnel

Sub-Sea TBM Tunneling: A New Approach to Oil and Gas Production

Learn More

Hybrid EPB/Slurry TBM provided for a Florida, USA tunnel in limestone.

Hybrid TBMs: A Clear Solution for Mixed Ground

Hybrid TBMs, specifically EPB/Slurry and EPB/Hard Rock machines, are increasingly becoming the best solution for challenging mixed ground conditions. Learn More


Ground Control: Mitigating the Inherent Risks of Urban Tunneling

Settlement. It is one of the biggest risks in urban tunneling and the cause of sinkholes, cracked building foundations, and tunnel collapses. Surface subsidence and upheaval have vexed contractors and equipment suppliers worldwide, but there are some proven ways to minimize ground movement, even in low cover tunnels. Learn More

McNally Support System used on Olmos Trans-Andean Tunnel

Ground Support for High Cover Tunnels: What is the Best Method?

Conditions in high cover tunnels are often challenging. At the Olmos Trans-Andean tunnel, crews face 2,000 m (6,500 ft) of hard quartz porphyry, andesite, and other volcanic rocks under high stress. At two rail tunnels in China’s Gansu Province, open-type machines are boring beneath 1,400 m (4600 ft) of weak phyllite and sandstone. Learn More