06.07.2010

Leoni starts supply for the Gotthard Base Tunnel

Leoni has now, following completion of the planning and testing phase, delivered the first 350 kilometres of power cable for the Gotthard Base Tunnel in Switzerland. This will be installed in the western tube of the section from Bodio to Faido of the world’s longest railway tunnel.

Leoni supplied the first shipment by train directly to the Gotthard tunnel. In the months ahead the various ready-assembled power cables, which have an overall length of 350 kilometres, will be laid in the 16.6 kilometre section between the two towns in the Ticino canton of Switzerland. A further 2000 kilometres of cable will be supplied over the next four years.

Leoni will be producing all of the power supply and safety cables for both the main tubes and the cross passages of this mammoth Swiss construction project. “We are, with our cables, facilitating the tunnel’s power supply, its emergency power, lighting and ventilation,” explains Beat Kaltenrieder, project leader at Leoni. “These cables are halogen-free and, to the highest possible standard, fulfil the stipulated fire protection criteria as are common in safety-sensitive construction projects such as tunnels, but also hospitals and airports.”

The temporary construction cables also come from Swiss subsidiary Leoni Studer. They supply the equipment and machinery with power while the two tunnel tubes are being finished and will subsequently be removed. As an all-in provider, Leoni has also prepared a laying plan that ensures seamless logistics while the cable is being installed, and with its experts advises on the cable entry.

Wiring of the Gotthard Base Tunnel is one of the Company's largest contracts outside the automotive industry. Leoni expects the project to generate sales of about EUR 59 million over its term of around six years.

World’s longest railway tunnel stretching 57 kilometres will significantly improve travel and transport options across the Alps and will go into operation on schedule in 2017. Whereas the journey from Zurich to Milan at present still takes 3 hours and 40 minutes with a Cisalpino tilting train, this travel time is likely be an hour shorter from 2017. The principal of the Gotthard Base Tunnel project is AlpTransit Gotthard AG, a subsidiary of Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) based in Luzern.