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2014SprShotcreteEMag

Hagerbach Underground Test Gallery By Dan Millette ASwitzerland. Officially called Versuchs doing research and development for tunnel con-Construction on this facility began in 1970with Dr. Rudolf Amberg, a mining engineer,-world-class facility, the Hagerbach underground test gallery is located in Flums, Stollen Hagerbach, which is its original German struction. The facility now has several test gal- name, the facility goes by V-S-H for short. It is leries, caverns, laboratories, and conference roughly a 1.5-hour train ride from the Zurich rooms. Research and testing is carried out on all airport to Sargans, and then about a 10- to types of underground construction elements, 15-minute drive to Hagerbach from there. including drilling, blasting, concreting, injecting, and bolting. There are almost 3 miles (4.5 km) of tunnels beneath the mountain that are used for various purposes, such as research and develop- ment work and presentations and training semi- nars, as well as banquets, fashion shows, concerts, and all types of private events. Hager- bach is open to everyone who has a requirement for a portion of the facility, even if it is not typically an underground event or function. This test site was designed to enable R&D in a controlled environment. The massive ventila- tion system can be varied to provide as much or as little air as required for a specific task. Being underground, it allows for trials that would be somewhat prohibitive in a populated surface environment, such as drilling and blasting. There is even a shooting gallery in the facility that enables marksmen or trainees to vary the lighting to match day, night, dusk, dawn, or anything in between. The International Centre for Safety in Tunnels uses the facility for the design and trial of smoke detection systems, fire detection systems, extin- guishing equipment, materials testing, and also for training of rescue and firefighting personnel. There is a 650 ft (200 m) long fire tunnel with secondary and parallel tunnels to form a com- plete testing network. Accredited fire tests are offered here, as this portion of the facility enables tests up to 2500°F (1350°C). My trip to the Hagerbach facility was to attend a course and examination to become certified as an EFNARC Shotcrete Nozzleman Examiner. This course is offered by the Inter- national Center for Geotechnics and Under- ground Construction. EFNARC (Experts for Specialized Construction and Concrete Sys- tems) is the certifying body. The entire course was taught in the underground environment. Our lectures were held in very comfortable con- 16 Shotcrete • Spring 2014


2014SprShotcreteEMag
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