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Microtunneling: Port of Livorno, crossing works.

Bentonite slurry in no dig excavation technologies plays a fundamental role in soil conditioning and in the lubrication of jacking pipes.
Its correct management therefore allows to obtain multiple benefits:

  • Extend the excavation life of the mud itself by reducing the additions with fresh mud
  • Reduction of friction during the pushing phases
  • Properly condition the soil in the excavation chamber
  • Support the face under pressure, waterproofing the walls.

The project we are partner of with ICOP takes place within the port of Livorno.

I.CO.P., company born in 1920, has been looking out of Europe with its jobsite since 2007.
In fact, from 2007 to today, I.CO.P. has expanded around the world and operated with its own jobsite in 25 countries: from Mexico to Singapore, from Sweden to Colombia. In 12 of these states I.CO.P. has taken root, opening branches with a stable presence on the markets.
In the microtunnel sector, to better assist the Oil & Gas multinationals by providing timely and quality services, the company has opened branches in Germany, Mexico and El Salvador.

Description of the work

The TBM arrived in Darsena Toscana, one step away from the fifteenth-century Torre del Marzocco, will have to slip over twenty meters deep to dig the Microtunnel passing under the access channel to the “heart” of the port. It will be used for the pipelines of the refinery that currently run the north side of the canal and prevent its enlargement. The conduct has a diameter of approximately 3m and will be 235m long. The excavation is carried out in soil mainly consisting of clay, silt and sand.


Laviosa is present as a partner on site for the supply of T-LINE bentonite products and additives for excavation, both for the TBM head and for lubrication.
We thank the port authority in the person responsible for the works, Eng. U. Campana (responsible for the design phase), and Eng. E. Pribaz (responsible for the execution phase).

We thank Ing. Yuri Picco and Ing. Tommaso Paroni and the ICOP company for the kind granting of the photos directly from the site.