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The engineering geologist must accept the responsibility of providing planning leadership and applicable explorations for contractors and manufacturers to evaluate properly the possible use of a tunneling machine on a project. Explorations and laboratory and field tests must be conducted to determine in advance those characteristics which will affect the efficiency and economics of a machine-driven tunnel. To accomplish this will require more detailed data than that normally developed for conventionally driven tunnels. The geologic factors which influence tunneling machines, current laboratory and in situ borability tests, laboratory test programs, and the future of geologic explorations are discussed in light of the engineering geologist’s role.

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