Topics and projects

Implenia and Herrenknecht donate drillhead to the Museum of Transport

Handover of the legendary «Sissi» in Lucerne today | In future, this witness to the Gotthard breakthrough will greet museum visitors at the main entrance

Dietlikon, 23 June 2012 ­– Sissi, the historic tunnel boring machine, is to be preserved for posterity. All of nine-and-a-half metres in diameter and weighing 225 tonnes, she had a voracious appetite for stone. In favourable conditions, she ate through as much as 38 metres of rock in a day. Now, she is retiring. Behind her are eight years of hard work, performed to an accuracy of eight centimetres horizontally and one centimetre vertically, and a share in the world record for the longest rail tunnel, part of the construction project of the century: the new transalpine rail link (NEAT). In future, Sissi will be a revered presence, greeting visitors as they arrive at the Museum of Transport in Lucerne.

Today, Saturday, the drillhead, an important witness to historic events, was ceremonially unveiled and presented to the museum. One of the speakers was Implenia board member Peter Preindl. Among the guests were numerous representatives of Implenia who had been in the east tunnel when the breakthrough was made at 2.17 pm on 15 October 2010, joining the drilling team to celebrate the work on the 57-kilometre rail tunnel.

After the breakthrough, the tunnel boring machine was stripped down. The individual components were removed from the tunnel and treated to make them weatherproof, so they could withstand the next few decades in the open air. Apart from the donors, Implenia and Herrenknecht, the other companies involved were Sika, Holcim, Ruag and Fanger, who contributed as sponsors to the donation of this new landmark exhibit to the Swiss Museum of Transport.

Media contact Implenia:

Esther Bürki

Communications Manager

Phone: +41 44 805 45 63


«Sissi» made her name with the world record at the Gotthard breakthrough on 15 October 2010. To ensure that the drillhead of this famous tunnel boring machine would not be forgotten, Implenia and Herrenknecht donated it to the Museum of Transport in Lucerne (photo: Museum of Transport, Lucerne).

Implenia is Switzerland's leading construction and construction services company. Formed in 2006 from the merger between Zschokke and Batigroup, Implenia can look back on more than 140 years of history in the construction industry. The company brings the expertise of its highly skilled Real Estate, Infrastructure Construction and Industrial Construction divisions under the single roof of a nationally and internationally active company. With its integrated business model and specialists operating in all its divisions, Implenia can manage a building project through its entire lifecycle and deliver work that is economical, sustainable, integrated and customer-centric.

Implenia, with its headquarters in Dietlikon near Zurich, employs more than 6,000 people and posted turnover of more than CHF 2.5 billion in 2011. The company is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (IMPN, CH0023868554). More information can be found at www.implenia.com.