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January 28, 2020

 Road tunnels and technology in an operational perspective
Arild Petter Sovik, Tunntech Global News

The Intersec is the World’s leading trade fair for Safety, Security and Fire Protection and the Fire and Rescue section appears to be growing steadily, and remains the fastest growing section at the Intersec 2018. With more than 1300 exhibitors and over 30 000 visitors coming from 129 countries, Intersec is the largest exhibition and the most international trade platform in its industry worldwide.

Operation and maintenance is important to ensure the value of assets over time. Furthermore, it is important to be able to manage the cost over time, and not least, ensure that construction and technical installations do not adversely affect safety.

Hardanger bridge & tunnels opened 17 August 2013. The bridge is a two-lane suspension bridge with walking and bicycle paths. The bridge has a main span of 1,310 meter and a total length of 1380 meter. The bridge goes into the mountain on both sides of the fjord. Both tunnels have roundabouts. One of the tunnels, Vallaviktunnelen, is 7.5 kilometer long.

Multiple Gas Detection (MGD) technology, originally developed for aerospace, is based on the detection of fire related gases, and can be an effective sensor to detect an upcoming fire in a moving vehicle. 

Tunnel operators face the challenge of illuminating the tunnels evenly according to given specifications and controlling the intensity depending on the situation. Its now available systems that enables operators to visualise system status and the condition of the light, in addition be more energy efficient and save costs. 

When a given event is to be handled, the operator must seek information in a variety of sources and decide what information is relevant. Its important to treat this information in a smart and secure way to ensure the right actions. 

In the last 3 years 20 tunnels have been installed with acoustic tunnel monitoring detection in Austria. The first pilot where carried out int the 2,4 km long twin tube Kirchdorf tunnel, and the pilot started in 2010. 

How will the implementation of autonomous and cooperative car technology effect management, operation and safety in tunnels. And what issues have to be considered when it comes to tunnels? The purpose of starting a work with Intelligent Traffic Systems (ITS) station concept has been to establish a method of communicating between tunnel and vehicle using a standard platform.

Several bicycle/pedestrian tunnels have been build in the world. There is now available new knowledge and understanding of how a bicycle/pedestrian tunnel has to be constructed and equipped to be a safe expressway for pedestrians and bicycles. 

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