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Tunnel Boring Machine installed at TUCA

By Juliet Whitcombe

Tunnel Boring Machine installed at TUCA

The Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy (TUCA) now has its own Tunnel Boring Machine thanks to the support of Crossrail contractor, Morgan Sindall.

The forward shell and stationary shell of the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) has been installed outside the reception area at TUCA, where it will be used to help learners understand more about the specialised plant and equipment used in tunnelling operations. The machine is unpowered and will be for demonstration purposes only. The TBM is on a three-year loan from Morgan Sindall.

TUCA will train up to 3,500 people in underground construction over the life of the project. It will ensure that Crossrail has the skills needed for its construction and will be retained post-Crossrail as a specialist training centre for other tunnelling projects such as HS2.

TUCA students will be made up of people from contractors’ existing workforces who want to up-skill or formalise their knowledge through nationally accredited technical and safety training as well as new entrants to the industry.

Crossrail is investing up to £7.5 million in TUCA. £5 million in funding has been provided by the Department of Business Innovation and Skills via the Skills Funding Agency. Further sponsorship has been also been pledged by others including National Grid.

Morgan Sindall is building Crossrail’s tunnel portal at Pudding Mill Lane.