Swissloop Tunneling wins Elon Musk competition

22 April 2024 10:47

Zurich CCGreater Zurich

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Zurich/Dübendorf/Bastrop - Swissloop Tunneling has won the Not-a-Boring-Competition 2024 in Texas and claimed the Champion Award. The team from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich was supported by the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology.

Swissloop Tunneling has won the third edition of the Not-a-Boring-Competition held in Bastrop, Texas. The competition is the brainchild of Elon Musk and is organized by The Boring Company, which he owns. The aim is to construct efficient tunnel infrastructure, including for Musk’s high-speed transportation system known as Hyperloop. In order to achieve this, innovative solutions must first be developed to increase the speed of tunnel boring machines and cut the construction costs.

Swissloop Tunneling won the Innovation Award in 2021 and 2023 and finished in second place overall. This year, the team from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich has managed to win the competition and the Champion Award title for the first time, further details of which can be found in a press release. Alongside Swissloop Tunneling, two other teams from the USA as well as one each from the UK and Bangladesh made it through to the final. The Swiss project has had the support of industrial partners for several years. The Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology provides workshops and testing grounds in Dübendorf in the canton of Zurich.

For the Groundhog Beta tunnel drill, which was newly developed after the team’s first participation, the overall system and the subsystems of the first machine have been thoroughly redesigned. The liner mechanism was also redeveloped. It builds the wall inside the drilled tunnel while the machine moves forward.

“We are particularly proud to have achieved this result due to the challenges successfully overcome and the great commitment of all members”, comments Eugenio Valli, who heads up the team. Swissloop Tunneling will now continue the project, with the next competition set to take place in the spring of 2025. ce/mm

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