Hydroelectric PP La Muela - Spain
Lifting and lowering of the heading cart for construction of a 720m long inclined shaft

Scope of works performed

Use of a tandem TMU-70 system for the continuous lifting and lowering of the heading cart for construction of a 720-m long inclined shaft

A start-up installation for assembly of the heading equipment

Load tests


Iberdrola S.A.


Rowa Tunnelling Logistics AG

VSL Entity

VSL Heavy Lifting Switzerland


2009 - 2010

Project Description

The Spanish electricity supplier Iberdrola was enlarging its pumped storage hydroelectric power station at La Muela, near Valencia. It is the largest pumped storage plant in Europe.

Increasing the capacity involved building a new pressure shaft to link two storage lakes that have an altitude difference of more than 400m. The shaft, which has an inclination of 45 degree and a length of 720m, has been built by a drilling and blasting heading method.

For this challenging project VSL Heavy Lifting developed a new tandem lifting-lowering system (TMU-70/550) based on SMU-70/550 units. There were several advantages in using a tandem system. In particular, the operation of two strand jacks in series on the same strand bundle allowed a relatively high speed of 40m/h and a continuous movement without intermediate stops for retracting pistons.

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