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5 Precast units
3.51 Tunnel lining Segments Precast concrete segmental linings have been produced traditionally in both reinforced
concrete and plain (unreinforced) concrete. The use of unreinforced concrete, and the
beneficial cost savings in omitting the reinforcement, generally results in other compro-
mises being made in the design. Commonly, this includes the need for more segments in
a ring to limit flexural stresses for both temporary conditions (transportation and hand-
ling loads) and for permanent loads. Unreinforcedconcrete also has severe limitations
where indirect tensile stresses may develop in a structure that is predominantly influenced
by compression loads. This includes the performance of the lining at the longitudinal joints
for transfer of the load between segments, and at the circumferential joints where tunnel
boring machine (TBM) propulsion ram pressures act on the lining, both cases resulting in
bursting stresses.

The use of steel-fibre-reinforced concrete in segmentally-lined tunnels has resulted in

designs with fewer segments in a ring than for an unreinforced concrete solution. Steel
fibre reinforcement provides a ductility and robustness in the material that is suited to
the manufacturing process, the forces imparted during construction, and the long-term
loading experienced by a tunnel lining, but which is lacking in unreinforced concrete.

There have been several utility tunnels designed and built with steel fibres. One of the first
examples of the large-scale use of steel-fibre-reinforced precast tunnel linings was on the
1.4km long Heathrow Baggage Tunnel, built in 1995(36). Steel fibres were also selected for
the reinforcement of the precast linings for the 24km of the Second Phase of the Channel
Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL), to improve their resistance to cracking and damage during hand-
ling and transport (see Figure 15). Polypropylene micro fibres were added to improve per-
formance in a fire(37).An additional consideration was their durability, particularly in saline
or aggressive environments, mainly due to the good crack control. It was reported(38)that
there was a small cost saving over conventionally-reinforced segment units. Steel-fibre-
reinforced precast tunnel linings were also used for the extension of the Jubilee Line and
the Docklands Light Railway, both in London. Figures 16 and 17 show the trial assembly
Be/ow/eftFigurel5 of a tunnel lining ring and a completed tunnel lining.
Precast tunnel Lining units for the Channel
Tunnel Rail Link.
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16 King and Alder(39)list a number of other projects that used steel-fibre-reinforced precast
Trialassembly oftunnel Lining ring. tunnel linings including various water supply and disposal applications.

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