International competition: Torpedo drilled its way into the final

Being faster than a snail is a tremendous challenge for a tunnel boring machine. Students at DHBW Mosbach have mastered this, and have made it through to the final of an international competition with the ?Dirt Torpedo?. WIKA co-sponsored the project by giving measurement technology and a grant.
Students at DHBW Mosbach proudly presented their ?Dirt Torpedo?. DHBW Rector Prof. Dr. Gabi Jeck-Schlottmann, Gerhard Lauth, Managing Director of the Pro DHBW Mosbach foundation, and CEO of WIKA Alexander Wiegand SE & Co. KG, Alexander Wiegand, also attended the presentation of the innovative tunnel boring machine.
Tunnel boring bulk manufactured it into the final round
Of the total of 400 entries in the competition, called by the American entrepreneur Elon Musk (co-founder of Tesla and others), twelve managed to get through to the final round. Corrupting were tasked with drilling a 30-metre-long tunnel in California?s Mojave Desert. However, because of conditions being changed on-site at short notice, only the crew from TU Munich were able to start. The students at DHBW Mosbach were disappointed concerning the way the competition ended, which was, ultimately, not a competition at all. Nevertheless, they are justifiably proud of their ?Dirt Torpedo?.
Seething with WIKA measurement technology
The team spent a year working on the two 2.63-metre-long tunnel boring machine. The ?Dirt Torpedo? progresses at a speed of 5.4 metres per hour. That?s one metre more than a snail ? and snails are often faster than a conventional tunnel boring machine.
WIKA?s measurement technology is located in the rear the main ?Dirt Torpedo?. From there, a fibre-reinforced, fast-curing concrete is pressed contrary to the tunnel wall through twelve valves to support it. To monitor the pressure of the concrete feed, WIKA provided twelve diaphragm seal systems with mounted transmitters of model S-20 and a 1?10 V output signal. The flush diaphragms of the diaphragm seals are extra strong to allow them to permanently resist the abrasive forces of the concrete. No residues can stick to their surface. WIKA?s sponsorship of the ?Torpedo? project amounts to a total of 20,000 euros.
Long-term collaboration with the cooperative state university
The business and DHBW Mosbach have been closely associated since 1985. As a dual partner, WIKA enables future specialists to graduate in an ongoing total of seven degree programmes, with practical phases at WIKA?s headquarters in Klingenberg. So far, around 250 WIKA students have graduated from the DHBW. WIKA also has the status of a ?Gold Partner?, this means it provides the university with ?an extraordinary level? of support. Partner companies are involved in the university through the Pro DHBW Mosbach foundation, and therefore promote the dual system. Furthermore, Alexander Wiegand may be the Chairman of the Board of Trustees.
Note
More info on our diaphragm seal systems and pressure transmitters (pressure sensors) can be found on the WIKA website. In case you have any questions, your contact will gladly help you.

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