The 2008 North American Tunneling Conference (NAT) is already shaping up to be a highly-successful event. With four months still to go, the exact order of the conference session program is yet to be finalized, however the number and variety of papers received is impressive.

To kick-start the congress, two short courses and a DRB Update workshop have been organised for Sunday, June 8. Organised by Levent Ozdemir, Professor of Mining at the Colorado School of Mines, the Soft Ground Tunneling one-day short course will encompass presentations on all aspects of tunneling in soft ground and soils, as well as reports on challenging EPB and slurry TBM projects.

The Underground Blasting Technology & Risk Management short course, conducted by professional mining engineer Gordon Revey, is intended as a review for managers overseeing conventional drill and blast works, in order to promote safe and efficient methods. Topics include modern explosive and initiation systems, blasting physics and rock breakage, control of blast-induced ground vibration and air-overpressure, estimating drill-blast costs and risk management.

Following a welcome address by congress chair Greg Raines and vice chair Brenda Bohike, on the morning of June 9, conference sessions will begin. Over 100 presentations are currently due to be given across four Track topics: Technology, chaired by Dennis Ofiara; Design, chaired by Bradford Townsend; Planning & Implementation, chaired by Marc Kritzer; and Case Histories, chaired by Mike Roach.

Alongside the congress, is the accompanying exhibition, which has already sold out – with more than 60 national and international companies taking booths at the show. Industry sponsorship of the social events has also once again been popular and as well as the Icebreaker Reception, Congress Luncheon, and Exhibit Hall Receptions each day, there will also be a UCA Awards Banquet.

Categories include a Lifetime Achievement Award, Outstanding Individual Award, Project of the Year Award and a ‘Young Engineers in Tunneling’ paper competition. With a closing date of May 9, the competition is designed to encourage young engineers to get more involved in the industry, by offering a travel and accommodation grant to attend the congress. “Based on the concept of the British Tunnelling Society’s Harding Prize, three finalists will be invited to make a short presentation during the Congress Luncheon,” says Hannes Lagger, who has organised the competition. The winner will receive a $1000 prize, with the runners-up each taking home $500. “The response we have had so far, both in terms of papers submitted and also sponsorship for an ongoing fund, has been fantastic,” says Lagger.


ABC Industries 112
Akkerman 511
American Chemical Technologies 320
American Commercial 213
Antraquip 402
Atlas Copco 414
Baroid Drilling Products 313
BASF 415
Bekaert 410
Boart Longyear 311
Brookville Equipment 207
CDM 108
Cellular Concrete 110
CETCO Drilling Products 309
ChemGrout 204
Continental Global 209
Crux Subsurface 411
Daigh Company 212
DeNeef 103
Everest Equipment 406
Geokon 109
Halcrow 408
Hatch Mott MacDonald 308
Hayward Baker 208
Heintzmann 404
Herrenknecht 203
Ivy Steel & Wire 206
Jacobs Associates 507
Jennmar 107
Layne GeoConstruction 501
Leica Geosystems 115
Linabond 200
Lovat 403
Mining Equipment 508
Minova 503
Moretrench 117
MWH 319
Nicholson Construction 509
NOV Brandt 315
Parsons Brinckerhoff 303
Phoenix Dichtungstechnik 318
Putzmeister 106
The Robbins Company 418
Ruen Drilling 202
Sandvik 214
Schauenburg MAB 111
Shotcrete Technologies 114
Sika 101
Surecrete/Nittetsu 210
Team Mixing Technologies 412
Thunderbird Mining – Zed 409
Towill 305
Tunnels & Tunnelling 505
URS 104
VMT 307
W R Grace 105
Wholesale Mine Supply 113
Williams Form Engineering 102


Tunnel Waterproofing and Shotcrete Symposium
May 5 – 6, 2008
Newark, New Jersey
2009 RETC
June 14 – 17, 2009
Las Vegas, Nevada

The Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco