The Artificial Seabed project is a research project investigating a new way of approaching fjord crossings. With floating bridges on each of the landsides and a submerged tunnel in the middle of the fjord, the aim is to create a fjord crossing that does not interrupt the traffic of big ships passing.
The project is a result of collaboration between Reinertsen, Dr. Techn. Olav Olsen, and Snøhetta. It is an ongoing project, now also involving Sapa, Hydro, Deep Ocean Group, and SINTEF. The project is supported by The Research Council of Norway.
Ship barriers surrounding the tunnel entrances on both sides protects the tunnel if ships where to sail out of their given routes. However, the barriers also allow audience, pedestrians, and bikers to walk on top and experience both the construction and the scenery.
The technical solution for the bridge investigates use of technology that derives from offshore gas and oil industry. Anchoring to depths higher than 500 meters can be both difficult and expensive, which is why this project introduces an artificial seabed at the depth of 30 meters. The artificial seabed is anchored on each landside, and attached to the seabed, pontoons carries the floating bridge and the tunnel.