Monday, December 18, 2017

Its a boring machine!

Work on the Super Sewer (aka the Thames Tideway Tunnel) progresses fast up in Fulham.

As previously posted, a giant "acoustic shed" has been constructed down which a shaft is being dug to get down to tunnelling level.

Down this great shaft will be lowered the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) which was came up the river at the end of November in bits on a barge from Kehl, Germany:
These bits are currently being assembled into the TBM (top pic) before it is moved inside the shed and down the shaft to start its job drilling the main tunnel itself.

Before that it was, of course, important to get that all important photo of the crew with the cutting head:

It certainly gives a sense of the scale of the tunnel to see the engineers in their orange jackets dwarfed by the tunnelling machine they are constructing and will guide through those kilometres of London clay.

This TBM is called Rachel after Rachel Parsons who sounds like an amazing women. Her Wikipedia article describes how she was director on the board of the family's Parsons Marine Steam Turbine Company and had a Master Mariner's Certificate. In 1920 she was one of a group of eight women who founded the engineering company Atalanta Ltd, which for a time had offices on the Fulham Road.

Sounds like she'd have got on really well with Victoria Drummond, who's book about her life as a marine engineer with the Blue Funnel Line (amongst others) blogger earlier.

I wonder if there's any record of them meeting?

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