The Fact Maker

MIT – MAHE Students at Atal Tunnel in Himachal Pradesh on a AICTE sponsored Study Tour, to provide valuable insights into Planning and Execution of large scale Engineering Projects

Bengaluru: All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) has funded 100 top engineering colleges in India to take its top ranked students from Civil, Mechanical and Structural engineering branches on a study tour to Atal Tunnel in Himachal Pradesh (YOUTH UNDERTAKING VISIT FOR ACQUIRING KNOWLEDGE- YUVAK- scheme).  Atal Tunnel connects Manali in Himachal Pradesh to Leh in Ladakh and is the world’s longest highway tunnel (9.02 km) constructed at a height of above 3000 meters from the mean sea level.  It cuts down the travel time between Manali and Keylong towns by 3-4 hours.   The objective of this study tour is to understand the geological and geotechnical challenges faced in the construction of the tunnel, the novel method adopted in the construction of the tunnel, inculcate research, innovation and patriotism among the budding engineers of the country.

Commander ( Dr ) Anil Rana- Director, MIT – MAHE, said “It is a matter of immense pride for all of us in MIT to see our students unfurling the MIT banner at the height of 3000 mtrs in one of the most significant symbols of engineering marvel in the country. I would like to thank AICTE for providing this wonderful opportunity to our students and also the BRO for facilitating the entire tunnel tour. I am hopeful that the tour will provide our students with valuable insights into planning and execution of large scale engineering projects. Jai Hind! “

A team of 10 students from Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT) in their 3rd and 4th year civil and mechanical engineering braches were taken to Atal Tunnel on 16th November, 2021 Engineers from Border Roads Organization who constructed this tunnel, took the MIT team on a half-day guided tour and explained the New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM) adopted, the ventilation systems, pollution monitoring inside the tunnel and the mode of dilution of air pollution by injecting fresh air using heavy duty fans .The NATM uses the inherent geological strength in the rocks to its beneficial use which increases the resistance of the tunnel to earthquakes and other natural hazards.  A dedicated evacuation tunnel is built beneath the tunnel which is used as an escape route to passengers and personnel at times of fire hazards and other emergencies

The students were led by Dr K Balakrishna, Professor of Geology at the department of Civil Engineering.  The student team comprised of Ms Roopali Shanta Pai, Ms Rithu Maria, Ms Upasana Surya Kiran, Ms Aashrayi Ranjan, Mr Divyansh Shukla, Mr Aatma Jyoti, Mr Rehan Agarwal, Mr Soumik Roy, Mr Anirudha Telang and Mr Fanil Birawat.