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First Archimedes Bridge Prototype to Appear in Zhejiang
    2007-04-19 02:28:08     Xinhua
The first prototype of an Archimedes bridge, also known as a submerged floating tunnel (SFT), will be realized in the Qiandao Lake in China's eastern province of Zhejiang, the president of the Italian Archimedes Bridge Company said on Wednesday.

The development of the submerged floating tunnel (SFT) prototype is revolutionizing the stable crossing typology of straits and lakes, Dr Elio Matacena told Xinhua.

The Archimedes Bridge is an innovative water crossing technology exploiting the principles of hydrostatic thrust and based on a calculation first developed by Archimedes, the scientist genius from Syracuse, in the third century BC.

The technology is expected to make the design of shore-to-shore links possible across straits, lakes or rivers, in places where such projects have been ruled out on economic and technical grounds.

The Qiandao Lake project, which commenced two years ago, is run by an Italian-Chinese joint laboratory, co-financed by Italy's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ponte di Archimede International (Archimede Bridge International), a company presided by Matacena.

A number of academics from universities and research institutions in Italy and China have taken part in the joint venture and Lu Yongxiang, president of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, chose the Qiandao Lake site for the project, which will have a length of 100 meters.

The Chinese and Italian academics presented their project work at a science meeting Monday and Tuesday at Lecco in northern Italy.

A delegation of four Indonesian academics also showed up at the meeting, a sign of Indonesia's interest in the crossing technology, which could help resolve connection problems in some of the straits between the 17,000 islands in the Indonesian Archipelagoes.

The Qiandao Lake prototype will serve to help plan for the project of a 3,300-meter submerged floating tunnel in the Jintang Strait, also situated in China's eastern province of Zhejiang.

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