Our company offices are a five-minute walk from the center of Dudweiler, a small town which was incorporated into Saarbrücken in the 1970s.
As the number of employees increased, DIaLOGIKa began in the early 1990s to search for larger offices — and eventually found new premises with a truly rich tradition: the building at the former Pascal Shaft in Dudweiler. The name of Puits de Pascal (Pascal Shaft) was conferred during the time when the Saarland coal mines were under French jurisdiction — in honor of Blaise Pascal, the legendary French mathematician and information-science pioneer whose name was also lent to the programming language of Pascal. At the same time, this symbolic transition — from a centuries-old industry and way of life into an innovation-based company operating in the brave new world of information and communications technology — illustrates perfectly the structural transformation that the Saar has undergone in recent years.
The building was converted in 1990/1991 under the watchful eyes of monument conservators, resulting in bright and functional rooms for one to five employees maximum — i.e. there are no open-plan offices. The unique flair of the building and its quiet location on the outskirts of Saarbrücken helps us all to work with greater commitment and efficiency.
The Albert Shaft or East Shaft and, after 1922, the Pascal Shaft, was named after the renowned French mathematician, physicist, theologian and philosopher Blaise Pascal (19 June 1623 – 19 August 1662). It was here that special new methods and processes for the coal mining industry were first invented and researched. The building thus prefigures neatly the DIaLOGIKa company philosophy of Wir erfinden software, “Reinventing Software” or “Rethinking Software”.
In 1917, a shaft of 14 m depth was sunk and brick-lined, followed in 1918 by a further 9.5 m.
The workers had to contend in the upper meters with heavily aquiferous red sandstone. In fact, a test stretch made through the sandstone was the cause of the shaft flooding. On 10 August 1922, following drainage and deployment of the freezing method, the shaft was officially reopened to much celebration.
The freezing method provides for the bedrock formations in and around the shaft to be frozen and then drilled again as normal without liquid water as an obstacle. In this case, 21 boreholes around the shaft cylinder were drilled, tubes installed and coolant then pump-circulated on a continuous basis. This entire process was recorded in the local coal mining annals, namely, Der Saarbrücker Bergmannskalender [1924: pp. 24-25]. It was the first-ever application of the freezing method for shaft-sinking purposes in the history of the Saar coal mining industry.
The Albert Shaft acted as an upcast ventilation shaft.
The last ride was at 6:35 am on 23 May 1973. The shaft was subsequently filled in and covered over.
(Text and photos with the kind approval of
Dudweiler Local History Workshop)