Automating the design of the longest immersed tunnel in the world

Between Puttgarden, Germany and Rødbyhavn, Denmark the longest immersed road and rail tunnel in the world will be built.
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The tunnel is 18 kilometres long and will consist of a four-lane motorway and two electrified railway lines. This new tunnel will reduce travel time for from more than an hour by ferry to 10 minutes by car and 7 minutes by train. Besides reducing travel time, the tunnel will also lead to a reduction in traffic emissions. This is due to the transfer of freight from road to rail and the fact that some lorries will take a shorter route as they will no longer have to cross Storebælt, Denmark, which will result in an overall decrease in CO2 emissions.

In cooperation with COWI a parametric design application will be developed to optimise the design of the tunnel. The tunnel consists of 79 tunnel elements, each 217 metres long. Each element has slightly different loads and soil conditions, so the optimal required steel reinforcement in the concrete is different. The total amount of steel used in the tunnel is equivalent to about 50 Eiffel Towers and each tunnel element weighs 73,000 tonnes.

The VIKTOR platform will be used to development the parametric design application which will be used to design the tunnel, which will help COWI find the optimal design in an automated way, so they can engineer the awesome!


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