Newsletter #10 - December 2011

Newsletter #10 - December 2011

   President’s address

The ITACET Foundation started its third year of existence under  very good conditions.

The “starting period” is now over; during these two years we succeeded to organize 12 events attended by almost 1000 participants as you can read in the website welcome page. The Foundation has now 26 Founders and Donors and can count on more than 80 lecturers provided by the ITA-CET Committee, both from academic and industry world.

After the recent Seminars in Shanghai (Safety under Operation), in Kathmandu (Sprayed Concrete) and in Phnom Penh (General approach on underground works), the Foundation’s programme for this third year, by June 2012, includes not less than  8 events in India (Health and safety), in Saudi Arabia (Safety under Operation), in Brazil, Chile and Argentina (Sprayed Concrete), in Mexico (general Tunnelling), in China (Mechanized Tunnelling) and of course in Thailand at the occasion of the WTC2012 (Tunnelling in Urban areas); some other actions are under preparation but not fully decided up to now.

I hope to meet all of you in Riyadh on 25-26 March 2012 for the Seminar for Continuing Education on Safety under Operation; you will have the possibility to listen and to talk with the major experts in the field; we expected to gather  not only the experts from ITA but also those from IRF (Road Federation), PIARC (Road Association) and UIC (Railways Union).

I wish you a very Healthy, Happy and Successful year 2012

ITACET Foundation’s President
Eng. Abdullah Al-Mogbel


   Editorial, Prof. Pekka Särkkä

Prof. Pekka Särkkä


- Training Course WTC 2011 Helsinki

ITA-AITES and the ITACET Foundation, together with the Finnish Tunnelling Association and four ITA sponsors, BASF-Meyco, Mapei-UTT, Normet and VSH Hagerbach Test Gallery Ltd., organized just before the WTC 2011 World Tunnel Congress in Helsinki a very fruitful two days training session for young professionals on ”Conventional Rock Tunnelling and Sprayed Concrete Technology”.

The course was intended to give the participants a holistic approach for use of wet sprayed concrete in rock support and permanent lining for rapid conventional tunnelling and underground construction. It concentrated on the basic practical aspects of the whole sprayed concrete process chain in daily production, especially on issues important for young engineers to understand and to have control over their daily work on site or in design companies.

The course was built up around Scandinavian practice of use of sprayed concrete. It as well included methods, techniques and trends in drilling, blasting, injection and waterproofing - all important parameters to successful use and good final quality of sprayed concrete as rock support and lining. The topics of qualification, training and certification of sprayed concrete supervisors and operators were, too, dealt in the course.

In the second day there was as well demonstrations in Lemminkäinen Construction Ltd tunnelling site just below the Congress area on EFNARC best spraying practices, sprayed concrete quality controls, sprayable membranes and fibre reinforced sprayed concrete to give the young engineers a feeling for important parameters to be checked and controlled in the sprayed concrete process.

The course gathered altogether more than 50 participants from 20 different countries, and the participants were extremely interested and satified with the course given by 20 high-level specialists from all arond the world. Especially the practical demonstrations gained high interest. Seeing is believing and probably the best way to understand the process of spraying concrete!

Prof. Pekka Särkkä

WTC 2011 SC Chairman


   Season's greetings

Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Happy New Year!

The secretariat of the Foundation.
Claude Bérenguier, Alexandre Pilloud, Jeannette Schaerli-Smeets



   Training session in Riyadh


The Foundation together with the Ministry of Transport (MOT) of Saudi Arabia is preparing a two days seminar to be held in Riyadh on 25-26 March 2012.  This Seminar on the theme of "Safety Operation In Railway and Road Tunnels" as for objectives to to provide an introduction to the safe use and operation of railway and road tunnel systems.

The main topics will be: 

    Research and Development
    Specific Aspects of Safety of Railway Systems
    Specific Aspects of Safety of Road Tunnels
    Fire control

The program is available, download it here >>

Arabic version is also available, read it here >>


    Training session in New Delhi

The Foundation together with the Tunnelling Association of India is preparing for February 2012 a two-day Training Session on Health and Safety in New Delhi, India. 

MM. Donald Lamont and Martin Vogel (respectively animateur and vice animateur of ITA-AITES working group on Health and safety) will lectures on four topics under the main theme "Health and safety"


  • General overview
  • Hazards and risks associated with different construction methods
  • Safety in tunnelling construction
  • Health in tunnel construction

More information about the course will be made available on the Foundation web site.


   Seminar in Shanghai

The Seminar for Continuing Education on Safety Operation in Metro and Road Tunnels was organized in Shanghai on 12-13 November 2011by TONGJI University, Shanghai Society for Civil Engineering (SSCE) and the ITACET Foundation.

The objective was to provide a general overview to the safe use and operation of metro and road tunnel systems followed by more in-depth sessions on operation (management structure and organization for emergency situations), monitoring technology, fire control (detection, passive and active fire fighting and mitigation) and research (recent research about safety in operation).

Four lecturers from the ITACET Foundation network, namely, MM. Felix Amberg, Amberg Group Amberg Engineering Ltd., Niels Peter Høj, HOJ Consulting GmbH, Dr Peter Reinke, HBI Haerter Consulting engineers and  Henry A. Russell Jr. P.E. , Principal Professional Associate of PB Americas Inc. gave 15 lectures during the two days of the seminar.

The seminar was attended by more than 100 participants coming from Clients, Universities, Designers, Consultants and Operators, etc. These participant were very active asking many interesting and detailed questions to the lecturers; looking to the evaluation forms they filled up at the end of the seminar, it was clear that the participants appreciated the quality of the lectures as well as the time devoted to exchanges.

This kind of “Seminar for Continuing Education” will be repeated in the future in Shanghai and in other major Cities in China; for 2012, it will be devoted to Risk Management and Safety Issues in Design, Construction, Operation and Maintenance in Tunnelling and Underground Space; it will last 5 days including increased exchanges during Round Tables.

At the occasion of this seminar the organizer represented by Mr. Bai Yun (ITA-AITES VIce President)  and M. Fu De Ming  granted a generous donation to the Foundation.


The complete program of the seminar is available to download >>


   Training session in Cambodia

The training session went well. The total number of participants was 120 including 5 guest speakers and 9 Norton university staff and management. In general, our participants were satisfied with the course especially those who have knowledge related to Geotechnical Engineering.

 Download the program of the training session >>


   Master Course in Lyon, France

Launching of the Master in "Tunnels and Underground Structures: from design to operation"

On Monday, October 3rd, 2011, thirteen students in the first semester of the specialized Master   in TOS  are integrated into this new training in Lyon. This program has been launched at the initiative of the AFTES  for a cycle of five month of course and projects and a five month internship within a professional environment.

The Specialized Master of the “Conference des Grandes Ecoles” is issued in co-accreditation by INSA Lyon and ENTPE, in very close partnership with AFTES and CETU.

It has been awarded with the support of the Union of Entrepreneurs of the Underground Works FNT.
The Master is an ITA-AITES endorsed course and granted  by the ITACET Foundation.

This is a post graduate training course which consists of high teaching level technical and scientific skills. The program is integrated into a comprehensive approach giving an overview of the projects underground.  Its purpose is to train professionals with both solid skills on the various technical aspects of the field, and a good knowledge of the overall approach for the design of underground structures, from the start phase of development and design into implementation, maintenance and management / operation of the works.

After a careful selection of files, and students being interviewed directly or through videoconference,  a number of applicants in this first session, the jury finally selected thirteen candidates representing 10 nationalities. This group (see photo) consists of: Catherine CABUT (France-CETU), Laurent CHENIER (France-Eiffage), François ASSELBORN (France), Luis Vanegas ROA (Colombia), Javier Miranda Calderon (Chile), Achour BENSALEM ( Algeria), Tech DUONG (Cambodia), Hasanov ARZOU (Azerbaidjian), Peng GE (China), Sylvain Joubert (France), Gonzalo Suzac (Lithuania - Uruguay), Murat BALATAN (Turkey) and Alkisti Tsirogiannis (Greece).

In accordance with the purpose of this training, the selected students are either young graduated engineers or young professionals in civil engineering who wish to specialize in the field of underground engineering or individual engineers representing from their company or organization.
It should be emphasized that this first session of the Specialized Master TOS was able to open with:
- The strong involvement of members of AFTES working group that has developed this project;
- The involvement of numerous professional interventions in this course and the animation of different teaching modules;
- And finally the financial support from AFTES, the Union of Entrepreneurs of Tunnel Works, ITACET Foundation and various businesses or engineering organizations such as: CETU, EIFFAGE, Razel, EGIS tunnel, that have contributed to the registration fee of some students.
The inaugural lecture of the Master was given by Professor Andre Assis, former president of the ITA and Chairman of ITA-CET Foundation, on Monday October 17,  as part of the International Congress of AFTES in "Urban Tunnelling: Constraints and Challenges".

This conference was a great success in joining together other Masters students, an audience over 150 people.
After a period of intensive course, students will tackle a major project with the theme of the river passing under an extension of the metro line B from Lyon to Oullins.
After this initial period and project, students will participate in a five month internship from March 1st 2012 that will contribute to the preparation of their thesis work.

Richard Kastner & Denis Branque
Master in charge of TOS


   Master Course in Torino, Italy

At the 21 of November 2011 was started the MASTER POST LAUREA: “TUNNEL AND TUNNEL BORING MACHINES” – 8th edition

The need of experts involved in TBM tunnelling as well as work site management is rapidly increasing throughout the world.
The requested qualification to cover these roles cannot be supplied by the first and second level of usual University programmes (Bachelor and MSc) but it appears that a special draw up course is needed.
Politecnico di Torino has developed and organized a Post-Graduate Master Course (one year of course for student who already got their MSc) on “Tunnelling and Tunnel Boring Machines”, endorsed by ITA/AITES (International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association) and supported by SIG (Italian Tunnelling Association), which has reached its seventh edition, the third completely offered in English.

For the first time, the course was granted a scholarship for one student by the ITACET Foundation.
In this course University lectures are merged with lectures and presentations by experts coming from construction and design companies, professionals and machine producers to provide the multidisciplinary knowledge that is necessary to work in the tunnelling sector.
The students are also asked to develop a practical training period 2 months in an Italian or European job site or a design company. The class-lessons took place from November 2009 to May 2010 for a total of about 500 hours

The course offer to the students to study in a real international framework as far as the lecturers are considered since they come from many different countries (such as Austria, Brasil, Canada, Danmark,  Finland, Germany, Italy, Spain, Singapore, Switzerland, the Netherlads, Turkey, UK, USA) and the class is usually made of international students: the student of the 2005 class came from Corea, Greece, Italy, Rumania, Turkey, Venezuela and Vietnam, of the 2007 class came from Costarica, China, India, Italy, Portugal and USA and of the 2009 class came from Colombia, Indonesia, Italy, Iran, Malaysia, Poland, USA, Venezuela.

For the first time, the course was granted a scholarship for one student by the ITACET Foundation.
Italian Tunneling Association, Geodata  SpA, Officine Maccaferri SpA and Autostrade per l'Italia SpA , also, provided  grants for Italian and International students.

This new VIII Edition of the course is supported by the following Golden Sponsors: Geodata SpA, GTT-Gruppo Torinese Trasporti, INFRA To, Mapei UTT,  Autostada per l’Italia, Atlas Copco, Maccaferri and by the following sponsors Herrenknecht, Sandvik, Robbins, Pizzarotti, Ghella, Tunnel Consult, Cifa, Geotunel and Zitron.

The teaching organization and management of the course is directed by Prof. Daniele PEILA Professor of Tunnel Construction at Politecnico di Torino and Member of the Executive Council of ITA, under the scientific responsibility of Prof. Sebastiano PELIZZA, Emeritus Professor of Politecnico di Torino.