In-Line Microtunneling

Published: May 7, 2017 | Last updated: July 5, 2023

What Does In-Line Microtunneling Mean?

In-line microtunneling is a trenchless method for replacing an underground pipe. This method involves filling the existing pipe with flowable fill to prevent fluid loss, followed by the use of micro tunnel boring machine to excavate the pipe and the surrounding ground to install the new pipe. In-line microtunneling enables the replacement of underground pipes with minimal disruption to surface environments.


Trenchlesspedia Explains In-Line Microtunneling

One of the environmental consequences of replacing underground piping is the potential for harmful product to contaminate the groundwater. In-line microtunneling minimises this risk by filling the pipe with flowable material so that any residual product is removed from the bore with the spoil of the micro tunnel boring. A micro tunnel boring machine uses a cutting head to cut through the earth and existing pipe. Pipe jacks push the cutting head forward and the pipe or casings into position. After which, a slurry system is utilized to remove the spoil from the installation.


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