INTRA-TUNNEL TRANSPORT (EN: tunnel transport; DE: Intertunneltransport; FR: transport interieur en souterrain; ES: transporte interior en galeria; RU: внутритоннельный транспорт) is the system of the means for the transportation of the loads and people within the tunnels during the period of their construction. According to the principle of the action, they distinguish the following intra-tunnel transport: periodic, namely, the railway transport (minecarts), the transport without the rails (automobiles), the scraper and telpher installations; continuous, namely, the conveyor and pipeline (hydraulic) transport.
Within the fatherland tunnel constructing industry, there is most distributed the railway intra-tunnel transport. The width of the railway track is 550, 600, 750, and 900 millimetres. The voluminous capacity of the minecarts is 0.5-10 cubic metres. During the transportation of the soil, they use mainly the minecarts with the continuous non-tilting body (with the voluminous capacity of 1.5 cubic metres), less often with the tilting body, and self-unloading; for the transportation of the concrete, of the elements for the assembly of the lining, of the long materials (timber, pipes), they use the minecarts with the special structure (concrete-carriers, tubing-carriers, block-carriers, and others). They transport the people within the passenger minecarts (12-18 persons, and more). For the moving of the minecarts, they use: the contact and rechargeable electric locomotives with the mass of 3000-14000 kilograms (within the tunnels with the length of 50 metres and more); the means for the haulage using the head, tail, or endless ropes (within the zone of the stopes, or within the intra-tunnel mine workings, which have been penetrated with the large inclination). The movement of the minecarts manually is acceptable at the places with the length of at most 50 metres. Within the tunnels with the large cross-section, they use yet broader for the transportation of the soil the automotive dump trucks and the dumpers (the shuttling automotive dump trucks with the rotating control). For the delivery and transloading of the soil from the stope into the hoppers or minecarts within the tunnels, they use the scraper installations; for the transloading of the soil and materials, they use the telphers. They use the conveyor and pipeline intra-tunnel transport mostly during the highly mechanized penetration of the tunnels. Together with the determined advantages, these types of the transport have certain disadvantages: the necessity for the growing of the conveyor structures, of the pipelines, and so on.
Abroad, during the construction of the tunnels, they widely use the automotive, and railway (the voluminous capacity of the wagons is up to 40 cubic metres and more) intra-tunnel transport, while during the mechanized penetration of the tunnels using the mechanized shields with the near-stope camera, they use the pipeline intra-tunnel transport (the United Kingdom, Japan, and West Germany).
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