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Sika technology used in Gotthard tunnel

Published by , Assistant Editor
World Cement,

1 June marks the official inauguration of the world’s longest rail tunnel, and Sika’s technology and construction expertise played a key role in the successful completion of the project. The challenging quality requirements were met through the use of Sika’s durable solutions for waterproofing, fire protection, coatings and concrete and shotcrete production.

The client specified an extremely long service life, during which time the concrete and waterproofing systems should require no significant maintenance. In the course of an elaborate pre-qualification process, Sika entirely fulfilled all the stringent requirements. The partly newly developed products underwent rigorous practical tests by official testing laboratories prior to mass production and application. The high-grade shotcrete used to support the tunnel excavation served as the base for the Sikaplan and Sarnafil waterproof membraned. The concrete lining was the placed using Sika admixtures so as to achieve the precision required for the tunnel surface geometry.

Since the start of preliminary testing in 1992, Sika employees have worked over 210 000 hours on the once-in-a-lifetime project. Approximately 20 000 t of concrete admixtures were used for the concreting works. The tunnel was waterproofed with 3.3 million m² of Sikaplan® membranes – roughly the size of 330 soccer pitches. Overall, some 40 000 t of Sika products, equivalent to 1700 freight wagons, were transported to the site.

Adapted from press release by

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