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Old November 21st, 2013, 02:02 AM   #801
StuZealand
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
Sorry, I misunderstood your post, because the stubs are under construction.
Thanks, I wasn't sure if they were, since there isn't anything on that monthly progress graphic that AlpTransit publish.

I'll have a look at the links you gave above.
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Old December 4th, 2013, 05:48 AM   #802
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The progress map for 1 Dec finally shows one of the branch off stubs at the Saré junction.
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Old December 14th, 2013, 10:27 PM   #803
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From the magazines AlpTransit publishes twice a year (also in PDF on their website).

Saré junction, eastern tube looking south (left intermediate exit to Lugano, right stub tunnel).

[IMG]http://i39.************/2gvj71v.jpg[/IMG]

GBT's northern portal, with one of the two tracks of the flyover junction (for southbound trains of the old line).

[IMG]http://i40.************/ezijw0.jpg[/IMG]

Some photos of Giustizia's junction (open air, no flyover): http://www.alptransit.ch/it/foto/gal...do/biasca.html (I can't directly link them)

This junction is designed to allow linking the line under construction with a new section linking the GBT and the CBT. This conenction would include two 8 km tunnels (double tube, that is, 32 km in total).

72% of the CBT has been excavated, and two thirds of the tracks in the GBT have been laid. Tracks from both sides have nearly reached each other in Faido multifunction station, however, from the north only the eastern tube has the track, from the south only the western tube. I think they are not connected yet.

A few days ago the first electric train ran under ETCS L2 control (the defintiive signalling system) in the south-western tube, and next year the German ICE-S train should make other tests (it is one of the prototypes of the German HST, however, this one only has two locomotives and a single coach, it is the one that broke the rail speed record in Switzerland, around 280 km/h in the LBT. will we see the 300 km/h reached in the GBT?).
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Old December 14th, 2013, 10:35 PM   #804
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What will they do with the old line once the tunnel is put in service? Will they run something other than regional trains there? Will they introduce some touristic named trains?
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Old December 14th, 2013, 10:55 PM   #805
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The regular offer will be an hourly regional train Chiasso-Erstfeld (apparently, fast Chiasso-Bellinzona, all stops to Erstfeld). In Erstfeld it will connect to IR trains to Zürich or Luzern-Basel.

Today there is the "Wilhelm Tell Express", but it is only a combination of existing IR train between Locarno, Bellinzona and Flüelen, and of steam boat Flüelen-Luzern, with a minimal common marketing.

In the future, the railfan club CSG (Club San Gottardo, who operates the Mendrisio-Valmroea international line), SBB Historic and the Swiss Museum of Transport are planning some touristic service on the old line, but nothing is known at the moment. Erstfeld is a major depot of SBB Historic, and the old Gotthard line will retain a capacity of 5 trains per hour per direction, so there is hope.

Beside that, car shuttles will run in the old rail tunnel if the Gotthard road tunnel will not be doubled (referendum in 2015).
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Old December 14th, 2013, 11:42 PM   #806
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A Gotthard shuttle? I assume their goal would be take trucks away on the rail to free up space for cars?
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Old December 15th, 2013, 02:39 AM   #807
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A Gotthard shuttle? I assume their goal would be take trucks away on the rail to free up space for cars?
If I remember correctly Gotthard road tunnel will have to be closed completely (ca 1 year) for a major upgrade and maintenance. If the decision is not to bore the second tube (likely outcome) then all the extra capacity will have to be absorbed by the car shuttle, the pass road and other alternative passes across the mountains. It will be a mess...
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Old December 16th, 2013, 08:10 PM   #808
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Today the first tests were conducted in the finished (13 km) section of the tunnel with a Stadler Flirt EMU. Official inauguration now scheduled for early June 2016 and commercial service exactly 3 years from now. Right now I see no signs of that deadline not being met.

Base tunnel tests start the countdown to opening
16 Dec 2013

SWITZERLAND: Transport Minister Doris Leuthard launched the first official test train through a completed section of the Gotthard Base Tunnel on December 16.

Accompanied by Swiss Federal Railways CEO Andreas Meyer and AlpTransit Chairman Renzo Simoni, Leuthard took the opportunity to announce that the Base Tunnel would be inaugurated during the first week of June 2016, with a public festival taking place over the following weekend. The countdown to the ceremony has now started, with just 900 days remaining until the inauguration, the minister affirmed during a trip on board a Tilo Class 524 Flirt EMU at 160 km/h.

http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/i...o-opening.html
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Old December 16th, 2013, 08:57 PM   #809
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Today a train reached 160 km/h, and 220 km/h will be reached by June 2014.

Beside that, it has been said that Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 June 2016 there will be the public opening of the GBT, with free rides through the tunnel (the official ceremony with politicians will be a day or two before).

Regular service will start on Sunday 11th December, the day of the timetable change. The CBT will then follow three years later (if all goes well).
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Old December 16th, 2013, 09:02 PM   #810
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To be honest when I look at the regular progress reports on alptransit.ch it's a bit mystifying why it will take another 2 1/2 years to complete the tunnel. About 3/4 of a track has been laid already and overall progress is listed at close to 2/3. What am I missing?
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Old December 16th, 2013, 10:30 PM   #811
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I don't know...

A video of a test run:

http://www.blick.ch/news/schweiz/zum...id2578429.html

The overhead line starts and ends inside the tunnel, so for the time being trains (in this case a Stadler Flirt) are pushed by a diesel locomotive.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 12:04 AM   #812
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
To be honest when I look at the regular progress reports on alptransit.ch it's a bit mystifying why it will take another 2 1/2 years to complete the tunnel. About 3/4 of a track has been laid already and overall progress is listed at close to 2/3. What am I missing?
It seems long to me, too. I imagine one of the main reasons is difficult access to the building site: You can't put as many people to work as you'd like and you can't bring materials in as quickly as you'd like (if you do it by train, that has an ever longer journey back to the exit before the next train can enter). Also, it might be that building it faster is possible but more expensive so it was rejected.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 05:26 AM   #813
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
To be honest when I look at the regular progress reports on alptransit.ch it's a bit mystifying why it will take another 2 1/2 years to complete the tunnel. About 3/4 of a track has been laid already and overall progress is listed at close to 2/3. What am I missing?
My assumption is that even when everything is 100% installed, there will be an extensive period of testing all the systems to ensure they all interoperate correctly under both normal and adverse conditions.

With such a complex and long tunnel with so many systems, they can't afford failure.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 09:49 PM   #814
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Does anyone here know the rock temperature inside the deepest sectors of the tunnel? Depending on that the effects on ventilation might be quite relevant. I'm sure this was planned for, but I'm curious about it. Usually ventilation of rail tunnels is much simpler than road tunnels since there is no CO an NOx accumulation.
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Old December 17th, 2013, 10:38 PM   #815
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50 °C? However, there will be no mechanical ventilation in the tunnel in normal use. Fans will be used only in case of fire or special occasions. Side note: the deepest section will be around 2.300 m of rock, which is less than the 2.500 m of the Mont Blanc road tunnel, but on a greater length. A list of tunnels showing their depth, an information rarely shown but of similar if not greate rimportance than the tunnel length, can be found on Wikipedia in Italian.

About the 3 years to open the tunnel: beside what has already been said, in Switzerland it is very rare a change of timetable outside the December change, so as it was impossible to open it in Decemebr 2015, it has been postponed one year later. Note that the full opening will be in December 2016, not in June. Between June and December many freight trains, but not all, will use the GBT, and the timetable will be planned as the GBT did not exist.

Beside that, there is usually a certaint ime buffer, to mask delays.
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Old December 18th, 2013, 01:19 AM   #816
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Quote:
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Does anyone here know the rock temperature inside the deepest sectors of the tunnel? Depending on that the effects on ventilation might be quite relevant. I'm sure this was planned for, but I'm curious about it. Usually ventilation of rail tunnels is much simpler than road tunnels since there is no CO an NOx accumulation.

http://www.alptransit.ch/fileadmin/d...hlen/gbt_e.pdf

It states "Maximum rock temperature Approx. 46° C"
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Old December 18th, 2013, 09:07 AM   #817
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post

About the 3 years to open the tunnel: beside what has already been said, in Switzerland it is very rare a change of timetable outside the December change, so as it was impossible to open it in Decemebr 2015, it has been postponed one year later. Note that the full opening will be in December 2016, not in June. Between June and December many freight trains, but not all, will use the GBT, and the timetable will be planned as the GBT did not exist.
But there might be a preview passenger service, as was done with the LBT.
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Old December 18th, 2013, 08:00 PM   #818
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Yes, it is likely. As far I remember, the LBT was inaugurated around 15 June 2007, the first revenue freight trains passed it the day after, then piggiback trains (RoLa, trucks with drivers) followed mid/end July, finally two passenger return trips a day were offered from around Septemebr/October. These two ran between Spiez and Brig on weekdays, between Bern and Brig via Spiez on weekends (one in the morning, one in the afternoon) and were sold as first class only.
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Old December 19th, 2013, 12:45 PM   #819
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got a question for you people. the argument for the tunnel is apparently to draw transit traffic onto rail. almost all rail transit traffic heading south enters switzerland at basel, noticeably db and they are slowly speeding up the route between frankfurt and basel, making other border crossing points even less attractive. from basel to milano, you can today travel via brig to milan in about 4 hrs. if you go by gotthard, it will take 4 hrs 45 min. the new tunnel is supposed to knock off ca. 55 mins travel time off that route. the advantage of taking the new tunnel for somebody coming from basel or germany and heading to milan would thus be no more than 10 mins over the brig route. am i missing something here or does this make the gotthard base tunnel no more than a local subway between zurich and milan, rather than a transcontinental corridor? or will other tunnels and additional improvements knock off some more of the travel time? or is the argument as usual, we are building some ultra-expensive infrastructure for hs, but basically just use it for extra capacity? or to please construction contractors? i would be happy for answers from people more familiar with the project and switzerland in general.
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Old December 19th, 2013, 02:05 PM   #820
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Actually you are forgetting about freight trains...
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